LAHORE - Opposition staged a walkout from the Punjab Assembly on Thursday to protest police torture on PML-N workers outside the accountability court.

Minister transport assured completing Orange Line Metro Train project by July 30, 2019 and launching crackdown against illegal bus terminals.

Giving directions to stop damaging crop on agriculture land leased out to growers, the chair constituted a committee headed by Law Minister Raja Basharat for resolving the issue.

The session started two hours and 15 minutes beyond the scheduled time with Speaker Ch Parvez Elahi in the chair.

On a point of order, PML-N’s Tahir Khalil Sandhu drew attention of the chair toward the incident, saying manhandling of political workers was condemnable. He said it was a pity that the government was afraid of a man sitting behind the bars. He claimed that police fractured leg of a female worker while another lost her one eye. He said that such brutality was highly condemnable. The Opposition staged a walkout but later returned and took part in the proceedings.  On a point of order, PML-N’s Waris Kalu said that revenue department teams were ploughing sown fields of small growers. He said that these farmers had got agriculture land on lease and such act was a big injustice.

Directing stoppage of operation in all districts, he constituted a committee headed by the law minister for resolving the issue.

During Question-Hour on Aukaf and Religious Affairs and Transport Department, Minister Ch Zaheeruddin assured the house of completing Orange Line Metro Train project by July 30, 2019.

Responding to a query of PML-N’s Hina Pervaiz Butt, he said that work on the project was underway on the directions of the apex court. He said that there was no issue of funds and amount was released as per needs of work.

Taking part in general discussions on food and agriculture, PML-N’s Sheikh Allauddin said that hapless farmers were making both ends meet by borrowing money. He said that no one bothered to utter a single word when tomato imported from India was sold at Rs250 per kilogram. He said that India had refused to import potato from Pakistan. He said the small farmers were the ultimate sufferers of the prevailing scenario. He said that fields of Beas and Sutlej were deserted and the poor were forced to consume even dogs and cats.

Ahmed Ali Aulakh suggested millers and growers to sit together to come out of prevailing tension. He said that timely payment against crop was due right of farmers. He added that increase in prices of fertilizers was unjustified as subsidy on agriculture was a normal practice worldwide. He suggested withdrawing taxes on agriculture inputs.

Minister Food Samiullah Chaudhry said that government would ensure full payment to sugarcane growers. He said action would be taken against those giving less price to the growers. The minister that government had zero tolerance towards adulteration mafia.

On completion of agenda, the chair adjourned the session till Friday (today) at 9am.