LAHORE - Speaker Punjab Assembly yesterday asked the Opposition to bring legislation if they desire to convert the daily-wagers as regular employees.

Punjab Assembly session started with a delay of more than one hour against the schedule time of 10am under the chair of provincial assembly speaker Rana Iqbal.

Starting with question-hour on Services & General Administration Department, parliamentary secretary of the department Asghar Ali Manda replying to a specific query of JI’s Dr Waseem Akhtar regarding making contract employees as regular told the house that nearly 11 thousand employees had been regularised in various departments of different grades in the province.

Akhtar demanded that contract employees of the Punjab Assembly and para-medical staff should also be regularized besides daily-wagers who were rendering their services for the last 20 years.

Manda said that regularising the contract and daily-wage employees of Punjab Assembly was the prerogative of the Speaker.

Speaker confronting the matter asked the JI opposition member that he should bring legislation if the opposition desires to change the service structure of daily-wage employees.  Replying to a query of treasury member Arshad Malik advocate, parliamentary secretary said that an officer could hold the possession of a government residence for six months after retirement but he might get an extension under extra-ordinary circumstances. However Mr Manda didn’t spell out the extra-ordinary circumstances.

Parliamentary secretary finance Rana Babar Hussain had opened the debate on Punjab Pension Fund annual report-2010-11 and 2012-13.

PTI opposition member Siddiq Khan quoting a report of a private TV channel said there was an embezzlement of 6.3 million rupees in pension fund of Muzaffargarh district. Corruption was being carried out under the very noose of the government.

Punjab government spokesman Zaeem Qadri confronting the opposition said that five accused had been arrested relating with the matter and the case was handed over to the FIA.

Punjab Assembly Opposition Leader Mian Mehmood-ur-Rasheed and Mr Qadri exchanged hot words for a brief phase while discussion over embezzlement of pension funds.

Shehnila Roth another PTI opposition member pointed out the quorum when treasury member Mian Rafiq took part in the debate over pension fund however the debate was resumed after completing the quorum. 

Punjab Law Minister Rana Sana Ullah on a point of order said that opposition members should come prepared for the smooth sailing of the house proceedings instead of making hue and cry over brief quorum issues.

Opposition Leader said that Leader of the House Mian Shahbaz Sharif had to come to the house to ensure the quorum issue. He should sit at least in his chamber if he didn’t want to come to the house to ensure treasury members presence for the smooth sailing of the proceedings.

Treasury members welcoming the Chief Minister to the house raised slogans “Look tiger is coming to the house”.

Opposition Leader also welcomed him saying it would help smooth sailing of the house business.

Chief Minister in his first address to the house had promised to take along the opposition but it was highly unfortunate that the opposition had been denied development funds which was its due right, said Rasheed.

Health and education sector needs real development. Mayo Hospital which is situated in the heart of the provincial capital needs MRI machines, he added.

Interesting scenes were witnessed when house members made queue to give applications to the Chief Minister and in the process they shook hand with him like shaking hand of a “King”.

Bowing down to the Leader of the House gave the impression that they were talking to an elected king for handing over their applications pertaining to resolution of different issues.