ISLAMABAD - National Assembly Speaker Sardar Ayaz Sadiq on Thursday rejected a reference seeking disqualification of Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif over his speech, allegedly containing lies about the army chief’s meeting with Pakistan Tehreek-i-Insaf and Pakistan Awami Tehreek.

The reference was filed by Azhar Siddique along with other lawyers to Speaker National Assembly on Sept 25. On rejection of the reference by speaker, these lawyers have moved Supreme Court of Pakistan against the speaker’s ruling.

In the five-page ruling speaker National Assembly rubbishes the contention of the petitioner arguing that under Section 1 of Article 66 of the Constitution the speeches of the parliamentarians on the floor of the house could not be brought in question in any court of law. He, while going through the arguments given in the reference, rejected the plea terming it baseless and unfounded.

Speaker Sardar Ayaz Sadiq contended that in the light of the circumstantial evidence and after going through the record of the proceedings he reached the conclusion that prime minister could not be disqualified under Section 2 of the Article 63, as demanded in the reference, and rejected the plea of the petitioner to forward the reference to Election Commission of Pakistan for further action.

He further stated in his reply that the Constitution of Pakistan provided protection to the prime minister against such proceedings and rejected the reference as irrelevant and beyond the constitutional precincts.

Azhar Siddique and other lawyers in their reference had taken the plea that in his address to the joint sitting of the parliament Prime Minister Mohammad Nawaz Sharif lied that government had not asked army to play role in defusing political tension created by the sit-ins of Pakistan Tehreek-i-Insaf and Pakistan Awami Tehreek and actually these were the leaders of both the protesting parties who had asked for meeting with Chief of Army Staff General Raheel Sharif.

But later in the evening Inter-Services Public Relations Director General had issued a press release rejecting the claim of prime minister made on the floor of the Parliament, adding that army chief had held meeting with Imran Khan and Tahirul Qadri on the government’s desire.

Meanwhile, after the rejection of the reference the petitioner lawyers have moved a case against the speaker’s ruling in Supreme Court of Pakistan and the court would take up the case for preliminary hearing in coming days.