peshawar    -   Opposition lawmakers, particularly women members, protested in the Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Assembly on Friday, after they were not allowed to speak about the motorway gang rape incident that happened in Lahore recently.

After recitation from the Holy Quran, the opposition members wanted to speak on the gang rape incident but Deputy Speaker Mehmood Jan, who was presiding over the session, did not allow them saying that he would first complete the agenda and later give the floor for discussion on the incident. 

The protesting MPAs staged a walkout and later returned to the House and staged a sit-in near the dais of the speaker, while wearing black headbands.

Pakistan Peoples’ Party (PPP) lawmaker Nighat Orakzai also shouted at the deputy speaker and exchanged harsh words with him for not allowing her to speak on the incident. 

Sobia Shahid of PML-N joined Nighat in staging the sit-in. However, Naeema Kishwar of JUI said on a point of order that the Lahore incident was condemnable. She also discussed the recent killing of a transgender person in Peshawar and a lady constable’s killing in Nowshera in the presence of several cops. 

She said that such incidents could have been avoided if the law-enforcement agencies performed their duties well.

The Jamiat Ulema-e-Islam (JUI-F)’s Zafar Azam withdrew his privilege motion against Matani Police Station personnel, but said authorities concerned should deploy polite cops for managing traffic mess caused by trucks and trailers supplying goods under Afghan Transit Trade.

Another privilege by Salahuddin Khan against the manager of the United Bank Limited Sadar branch was also referred to the committee concerned.

On a call attention notice of Jamaat-e-Islami (JI)’s Inayatullah Khan about shifting of the World Bank projects of hydel power from Dir to Swat, Special Assistant to Chief Minister on Information Kamran Bangash said that he would inform the House after getting a briefing from Adviser to Chief Minister on Energy and Power Himayatullah Khan. 

However, he said the two projects of 69 megawatts were dropped by the World Bank for executing a mega project of 157 megawatts at Madian in Swat.

Meanwhile, Adviser to the Chief Minister on Higher Education Khaliqur Rahman told the House that the two-year BA, BSc courses were being winded up and four-year BS and two years associate degree courses were being launched in 128 colleges of the province.

He admitted that private candidates would not be able to receive higher education, and said that BS courses could not be launched in all colleges in the province.

A motion of Awami National Party MPAs Salahuddin Mohmand and Faisal Zeb against managing director Sports and Tourism Junaid Khan was referred to a privilege committee. The lawmakers complained the official did not meet them despite keeping them in waiting for a long time and later the staff of MD’s office allegedly misbehaved with them.