Ruckus in Sindh PA as new Opp alliance takes seats


The Sindh Assembly was on Thursday shaken by one of the rowdiest sessions in its history when lawmakers shouted and hurled full-throated abuses at each other, making way for one of the most disorderly sittings ever seen in the provincial legislature.
Amid politicking, the House however undertook some legislation, like Sindh Public Procurement (Amendment) Bill, 2012 which was passed into law unanimously in the absence of newly-formed opposition alliance. Amid intermittent sparring between the treasury and opposition members, the day marked the allotment of opposition seats to the legislators representing the Awami National Party (ANP), Pakistan Muslim League-Functional (PML-F), National People’s Party (NPP), Pakistan Muslim League-Quaid (PML-Q) and Pakistan Muslim League-Likeminded.
The ministers from the above parties, like Jam Madad Ali Khan, Amir Nawab Khan and Shehryar Meher, however, preferred to boycott the assembly session until the acceptance of their resignations by the Sindh government. The atmosphere was very much charged when Speaker Nisar Khuhro called the House to order at 12:15pm. The opposition members wore black arm bands in protest.
The bone of contention remained the Sindh’s People’s Local Government Ordinance 2012, called a “black law” by the protesters. Nusrat Seher Abbasi of the PML-F said the bill’s passage had proven that the PPP was a traitor of Sindh.
The treasury countered its opponents’ remarks by recalling their past “misdeeds”, like siding with dictator Pervez Musharraf, supporting the anti-Sindh Kalabagh Dam and Legal Framework Order (LFO). Having been allotted seats on the opposition benches by the speaker, the opposition members resorted to hooliganism as soon as the speaker announced the Sindh governor’s assent to three bills, including the disputed SPLGO 2012.
While the alleged “abuses” went unheard, the members from two sides of the PPP-dominated House waged personal attacks against each other to the extent that even some very unparliamentarily words were uttered by the clashing sides.
Prominent from the opposition side were Seher Abbasi, Jam Madad Ali and Marvi Rashdi confronted by PPP ministers Murad Ali Shah, Pir Mazaharul Haq, Sharjeel Memon, Rafique Engineer and Siraj Durrani. Imdad Patafi and Tauqeer Fatima Bhutto also stood out in the ruckus. “Shut up” and “you shut up” were the arguments exchanged between Finance Minister Shah and Seher Abbasi when the latter interrupted Shah’s speech.
The opposition side gathered in front of the speaker in the hall and tore apart copies of the day’s agenda. Abbasi went a step further and ripped apart a file of “official documents” lying before Local Government Minister Agha Siraj Durrani.
The opposition members later walked out at least thrice from the House and then came back to respond to the criticism made by the treasury benches in their absence.
It was a solo flight for the PPP, as none its coalition partners from the MQM spoke even a word throughout the pandemonium.
At one point, Jam Madad and Murad Ali Shah exchanged “abuses” that Humera Alwani later said were incommunicable. The treasury members, subsequently, tabled in the House a “censure motion” against what Pir, Durrani and Alwani said was “unruly and un-parliamentary behaviour” of the opposition members who took the House hostage for sometime. The motion was adopted by the House with the speaker giving the ruling that the members should always show tolerance while acting or reacting in the House.
Meanwhile, the Sindh Public Procurement (Amendment) Bill, 2012 passed under a supplementary agenda by the House, empowered the Sindh government to exempt the procurement of an object or class of objects required in national interest.