ISLAMABAD - PkMAP chief Mehmood Khan Achakzai, a key government ally, yesterday missed a chance to clarify his position on his previous remarks regarding the performance of intelligence agencies as National Assembly session was prorogued abruptly.

The session was prorogued only after one-hour proceedings, by the chair ostensibly to avoid Achakzai’s remarks to clear his position about his recent controversial statement.

Speaker Iyaz Sadiq, soon after taking only one point order by MQM after the question-hour, hastily prorogued the house as Achakzai was intending to speak on the same issue.

Achakzai the other day had asked the chair to give him the floor for five minutes to response to Interior Minister Chaudhary Nisar Ali Khan. “Mr. Speaker, I will take the floor for five minutes tomorrow (Wednesday), as in my absence some remarks were made about me,” said the PkMAP chief on Tuesday last.

Nisar Ali Khan had also requested Achakzai to speak in his presence in the house. Nisar, a couple of days before, had strongly condemned the the statement of Achakzai against intelligence agencies.

Interestingly, both the senior lawmakers were present in the house but this issue was not taken up in the house.

It was expected that the PkMAP leader would further speak on the same issue, as in an informal chat outside the parliament house with media he was seen much interested to speak on the same matter.

Responding to the concerns raised by MQM’s lawmaker about the alleged victimization, Minister for Interior Chaudhary Nisar Ali Khan said that he would talk to DG Rangers and Sindh government for addressing the concerns of MQM.

“I have sought time for this matter with concerned authorities and surely will share a report with the house,” said Nisar while assuring the MQM lawmakers.

Earlier, MQM’s lawmaker Iqbal Muhammad Ali raised his concern that his party members were being harassed. “Raids are being conducted at MQM offices in different sectors without any reason,” said MQM’s MNA, terming it an attempt to push them to the wall.

The lawmakers of MQM were intending to stage walkout in protest but on the assurance of the interior minister they changed their decision.

PPP’s Naveed Qamar, commenting on the same matter, said that political forces should avoid blame game as this is a joint responsibility of federal government and Sindh.

The house also adopted a motion to authorize the Speaker National Assembly to appoint a committee in consultation with the Chairman of the Senate and Leaders of the Parliamentary Parties comprising up to 20 members to review the NAB Ordinance, 1999 and recommend necessary amendments. The committee will present its report within three months of the notification of this committee.

A report of the National Assembly Standing Committee on Defence on the National Command Authority (Amendment) Bill, 2016 which seeks amendment in the National Command Authority Act, 2010 was laid in the National Assembly.

The National Command Authority (Amendment) Bill, 2016 was passed by the defence committee of the house on 27th of the last month.

According to the bill, the federal government shall ensure provision of funds and make contributions in local and foreign currencies to the National Command Authority (NCA) through the Strategic Plan Division (SPD) as may be necessary to the Authority.

The ‘statement of objects and reasons’ says, ‘the amendment bill, provides more clearly that the federal government will ensure provision of funds and to further reiterate the original intent of the NCA Ordinance, 2007 and the NCA Act, 2010’.

The report of the standing committee on law and justice on the Hindu Marriage Bill, 2016 which provides for solemnization of marriages by Hindu families and the report of the standing committee on Finance on the Benami Transactions (Prohibition) Bill, 2016 which provides for prohibition of holding property in benami were also laid in the house.

The house in Wednesday’s proceedings witnessed very thin presence of the lawmaker from both sides of the aisle.