War of words in PA


Uproar and exchange of sharp words dominated Punjab Assembly’s session on Tuesday when treasury and opposition lawmakers clashed over the ongoing political rifts in the country.
President Asif Ali Zardari’s medical trip to Dubai remained the top controversy as members of the provincial assembly (MPAs) belonging to the Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) and the Pakistan People’s Party (PPP) resorted to mudslinging against the leaderships of each other’s parties. Acting Speaker Rana Mashhood Ahmed Khan, despite his repeated requests to bring order in the House, failed to calm the situation.
However, the speaker was finally heard and the atmosphere improved. He said that no one should politicise the president’s health, and led the prayer for his early recovery.
Following the question-answer hour, Opposition leader Raja Riaz while speaking on a point of order criticised the performance of the Punjab government. He lashed out at Punjab Chief Minister Shahbaz Sharif and his cabinet members for not attending the assembly session. “The chief minister considers it his insult to attend an assembly session,” the PPP leader said, calling all ministers in the provincial cabinet “incompetent”.
Punjab Food Minister Malik Nadeem Kamran objected to Riaz’s comments, saying the opposition leader’s views were malicious. Riaz reciprocated by intensifying his charge against the Punjab government. He said the government was using the provincial bureaucracy to snub the opposition, alleging that a Faisalabad police officer had been tasked to remove the banners and posters of the PPP.
The opposition leader’s remarks enraged the treasury members and PML-N MPA Ali Asghar Munda raised the issue of Zardari’s visit to Dubai to get medical treatment. Munda said the Punjab Assembly should have been officially updated on the president’s departure. He alleged that Zardari had fled the country due to the memo scandal. In response, Deputy Speaker Rana Mashhood reprimanded Munda, saying that there should be no politics on someone’s illness. However, he ordered switching off Munda’s microphone when he continued with his speech.
Meanwhile, the House passed a unanimous resolution to include the education of Quran and Sunnah in the curriculum up to matriculation in the province.


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