ISLAMABAD - Former prime minister and PML-N MNA Shahid Khaqan Abbasi, while participating in Tuesday’s National Assembly proceedings, asked the speaker to issue production orders of all detained MNAs including Rana Sanaullah.

Khaqan came down hard on Speaker National Assembly Asad Qaiser for allegedly creating hurdles in the issuance of his production orders.

“I am not here to beg for my production orders but it is the right of MNAs...If you [Speaker NA] have any pressure we [arrested MNAs] will not attend proceedings,” he said, mentioning that non-issuance of production orders is tantamount to disgrace of the sanctity of parliament.

He condemned non-issuance of production orders of Rana Sanaullah, saying as to how he [MNA] could be deprived of representing his voters in the house.

The former prime minister made his entry in the National Assembly on an angry note staging walkout from the House after accusing the speaker of creating hurdles in the issuance of his production orders.

“I am able to attend Tuesday’s proceeding on court orders and not on the speaker’s production orders,” he said in an angry tone, mentioning that he had written letters to the speaker national assembly to realize him about the rules.

“What option is left for us if the chair creates hurdles in issuance of production orders,” he said, inviting interference from the speaker national assembly.

MPs agree to legislate on student unions’ revival

“It is not your powers to prevent any member represent his voters in the House,” he argued while addressing the speaker.

He also referred to the conduct of House by Speakers in the past including Syed Fakhar Imam, Malik Meraj Khalid and Syed Yousaf Raza Gilani.

He also left the house in protest for not issuing production orders of all the arrested MNAs.

Khawaja Saad Rafique, another MNA attending proceedings on production orders, also asked the chair to issue production orders of all arrested MNAs.

“It was our feeling that there are hurdles from some powers in the centre and not from the Punjab province,” he said.

PTI parliamentarian Asad Umar, responding to the PML-N MNA, defended the conduct of the chair. “It was unfair to criticize the Speaker as the chair has been conducting proceedings on principles and rules,” he said.

LEGISLATIVE BUISNESS

The opposition with a majority vote rejected the government bill with titled ‘The Pakistan Hotels and Restaurants (amendment), 2019’. 

The opposition lawmakers opposed the idea of government lawmaker Muahmmad Alamgir, the mover of the bill.

Earlier, the government MNAs with a majority of vote rejected the bill titled ‘The National Accountability amendment) bill, 2019’ moved by a lawmaker from religio-political party Moulana Akbar Chitrali.

Meanwhile, parliamentarians from both sides of the aisle agreed to initiate legislation for the ‘revival of student unions’ with the aim to make democratic culture flourish in the country.

Majority of lawmakers supported the revival of student unions in their proposals including zero interference of political factions to create political wings. However, some MNAs opposed the idea to revive the student unions as it may cause disturbance in the educational activities of students.

The bill with title ‘The Higher Education Commission (amendment), 2019’, moved by PML-N’s MNA Kesoo Mal Kheel Das, was referred to the concerned standing committee for further discussion.

PML-N’s parliamentary leader Khwaja Muhammad Asif, giving argument in the favour of the bill, said that student unions play an important role for the learning of politics. These were banned when some student organisations had adopted the path of extremism and violence.

Khwaja Saad Rafique from PML-N, who was attending the proceedings on production orders, said that there was no harm in revival of student unions. “It must be ensured that political parties would avoid creating their wings,” he said.

Minister for Human Rights Shireen Mazari and State Minister For Parliamentary Affairs Ali Muhammad Khan supported the gist of the bill.

PPP-P’s Raja Pervaiz Ashraf, supporting the idea to revive student unions, said that these unions play a role of nurseries.

PPP-P’s Nafeesa Shah proposed to discuss it in the committee of the whole house to reach consensus.

MQM-P Amin Ul Haq, ANP’s Ameer Haider Khan Hoti, MMA’s Maulana Akbar Chitrali supported to initiate legislation and referring the bill into the concerned committee.

MNA Chaudhary Mehmood Bashir opposed the idea for the revival of student unions. “It has become a fashion to revive student unions,” he said, mentioning that student unions deteriorate the education system as students involve in other unnecessary activities.

“Every citizen shall have the right to form associations or unions, subject to any reasonable restrictions imposed by law in the interest of sovereignty or integrity of Pakistan, public order or morality,” says the bill.

Meanwhile, the House unanimously passed a resolution condemning the legislation passed by the Indian Lok Sabha relating to amendment in the Indian Citizenship Act in contradiction of all international human rights and international human rights laws. The resolution was moved by Minister for Human Rights Dr. Shireen Mazari.

Earlier, Minister for Power Division Omar Ayub Khan had expressed government’s commitment to provide cheap electricity to consumers. It will be generated through solar and wind energy projects by 2025 at a rate of less than 6.5 rupees per unit, he added.