ISLAMABAD -  Minister of State for Information, Broadcasting and National Heritage Marriyum Aurengzeb winding up discussion on a motion by PTI in the senate Thursday said that the permission to the party to hold a press conference at PID was denied as per Rule 55, Section-3 of the Rules of Business of the Government of Pakistan 1973, which did not permit political parties to hold press conferences at PID.

The minister said that allowing the holding of press conference at PID would have been a violation of the rules besides setting a wrong precedent.

She said that the concerned rule obligated all federal government organizations that all official news and information shall be conveyed to the press and general public through PID or External Publicity Wing of Information and Broadcasting Division and such officers as may be authorized by the government shall act as official spokesperson of the government while conducting press conference in PID.

No statement involving foreign policy shall be made by a person other than the Minister of State for Foreign Affairs or the Prime Minister without prior consultation with the Aoreign Affairs Division.

The minister referring to the permission given to PTI to hold a press conference at PID in 2016 by the then information minister, said that he might have relaxed the rules to allow a political party to hold press conference at PID.

She said it was unpleasant for her to refuse the PTI members to hold a press briefing at PID but she could not violate the rules.

Marriyum contended that if the Parliamentarians who were the authors of the laws and rules started violating the same, then nobody would follow these laws and rules.

Marriyum said that if the Parliamentarians desired people to respect the law and change their attitudes, then they would have to set worth emulating examples for them.

The Minister explained that she had received a written request by the PTI member just 15 minutes prior to the time set for the press conference and she immediately asked the Press Information Department for a prompt reply to the party quoting the stated rule.

She quoted another instance when a written request by PTI members was received just 15 minutes before the time set for press conference and she had responded quoting the same rules.

She also responded to a point made by Leader of the Opposition Chaudhry Aitzaz Ahsan and said, when the resignation of the Prime Minister of Pakistan was being demanded in connection with Panama Papers, the ministers used to present the government's stance and not of Pakistan Muslim League-N in their press conference at PID, as the office of chief executive was being targeted.

The minister also informed the House that no indecent treatment was meted out to PTI members as she had strictly directed the PID officials to show respect to the Parliamentarians even though the live telecast by TV channels clearly indicated that the PTI members approached PID accompanied by some other people.