LAHORE-The PML-Q forward bloc has been allocated separate seats in Punjab Assembly, but its head, Dr. Tahir Ali Javed may not get the status of Parliamentary leader, a necessary legal requirement which gives legitimacy to the group. Taking action on an application bearing signatures of 47 members of forward bloc, Speaker Punjab Assembly Rana Muhammad Iqbal on Tuesday allocated separate seats to the PML-Q dissidents in the House while deferring a decision on their request to declare Dr Javed as their Parliamentary leader. Though the group has got a separate identity in Punjab Assembly by proving its majority in the House, but there are still questions on its legal status in the absence of a declared Parliamentary leader whose decision in the Assembly is legally acceptable and binding on other members. It is interesting to note that there was no legal method mentioned in the Constitution about nomination of a Parliamentary head of a political party in any legislature until passage of the 18th Amendment which has authorised head of a political party to pick up a party lawmaker of his choice for the purpose and communicate his name to the Speaker. But the problem is that this provision in the Constitution will take effect when new Assemblies are put in place after next general elections. Till then, no political party can have a Parliamentary leader in strict legal terms, though as per Parliamentary traditions being followed in various Assemblies, a legislator nominated by party head as Parliamentary leader is accepted as such by the Speaker.. Talking to The Nation, Deputy Speaker Punjab Assembly, Rana Mashhood said that separate seats had been allocated to the forward bloc under rule 8 of the Assembly rules of procedure, but there was no legal provision available in the Assembly rules to declare Tahir Ali Javed as Parliamentary leader of his group. He said though a procedure had been laid down in the 18th Amendment, but it will be applicable on new Assemblies. When contacted to know his response over Speakers decision, Dr. Tahir Ali Javed said he was satisfied with the judgment. He said all members of his group had chosen him as their Parliamentary leader and there was no need for any formal declaration by the Speaker in this regard. When asked about political and legal status of his group, he said unification bloc was still affiliated with the PML-Q with the only difference that it had attained majority in the House and on that basis it could take any decision in the Assembly. He was of the view that there was no legal bar on them to support the PML-N or any other party on any issue. The allocation of separate seats to the group is being seen as a first step towards 'legitimisation of the rebellious legislators of the PML-Q who want to be aligned with the PML-N against the wishes of their mother party on whose symbol they contested the last election. In their existing status, however, members of the forward bloc cannot avoid the defection clause which prevents Assembly members from voting against the decision of their party head. Leader of the Opposition, Ch Zaheeruddin said that forward bloc lacked legitimacy and its members would be de-seated if they voted for the PML-N in the Assembly. Commenting on the development, PPP Minister, Ashraf Sohna criticised the move, saying that it was an attempt by the PML-N to disfigure the current democratic set up which was going on smoothly without any problem. 'An old habit of Mian Nawaz Sharif, that of creating turncoats has forced him to show his real face yet again, the Minister further observed. Terming members of the forward bloc as 'political offspring of former President Pervez Musharraf, the PPP leader said that Nawaz Sharif had now adopted these 'political orphans. PML-N spokesperson Pervaiz Rashid, however, held a different view of the entire situation. According to him, the Speaker had taken the decision as per rules because the group had proved majority in the House. Responding to the allegation of promoting loatacracy (causing defections in other parties), he said the accusation will have been valid if the PML-N had given Ministries to the forward bloc members.