ISLAMABAD - JUI-F leadership is contemplating to come up with a formal move in the National Assembly for de-seating of PTI MPs for remaining absent from the house proceedings for well over 40 days without securing formal leave from the speaker.

Sources in the party confirmed that Jamiat Ulema-i-Islam-Fazl (JUI) chief Fazlur Rehman has given affirmative nod to the move, as earlier the party had dropped pressing the point of Pakistan Tehreek-i-Insaf (PTI) lawmakers resignation on the floor of the National Assembly following some tacit understanding between Fazl and Premier Sharif.

Central Information Secretary of the party Hafiz Hussain Ahmad had also dropped a hint in a media chat on Monday that the party would definitely be taking up the issue during the current session of the assembly. He said they had already taken up the issue on the floor of the House earlier but Speaker Ayaz Sadiq had put the matter in limbo and then the party leadership decided not to press the issue for the collective good of the incumbent political dispensation.

Sources informed The Nation that after the current tiff between the two coalition partners on the 21st Constitutional Amendment and the changes introduced in Army Act 1952, the JUI-F leadership felt alienated. A senior parliamentarian said that by raising the issue of PTI MPs resignations, particularly of its chairman Imran Khan on the floor of the National Assembly, JUI-F wanted to avenge its humiliation by ruling PML-N because the de-seating of Imran and his party MPs would create serious crisis for the government, which wanted to resolve the issue with PTI through negotiations.

Even if the speaker keeps the matter of PTI MPs in limbo, the raising of the issue by JUI-F would push the ruling PML-N in an awkward position.

The sources in the government said that Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif has already tasked some of his close confidants to meet Fazlur Rehman to give them assurance that the government has no plans to target religious seminaries or any particular sect in the name of operation against militants, but so far no breakthrough has been made on this front. Even Fazl was avoiding meeting Premier Sharif, a source in the government confirmed.

On the other hand, JUI-F central leaders were of the view that the party would not accept anything short of further amending the 21st Constitutional Amendment and incorporation of their proposed amendments in it. They grilled PML-N for bulldozing the amendment in the constitution without taking even the coalition partner on board.

The sources said that the party MPs would move a fresh resolution to the NA speaker under Article 64 seeking de-seating of Imran Khan and his other party MPs who had tendered their resignation as MNAs on August 21 last year whereas the membership of any MP would seize to exist in case he/she abstains the proceedings of the house for 40 days without seeking formal leave from the house speaker.