ISLAMABAD - The joint opposition Monday continued its boycott of the National Assembly (NA) after strongly criticising the government over the matter of independent lawmaker Jamshed Dasti.

The opposition side, as strategy, too skipped the proceedings during discussion over the recommendations of the Senate on the budget.

The main opposition lawmakers strongly criticised the government over the detention of independent lawmaker, Jamshed Dasti, from Muzaffargarh.

NA Speaker Ayaz Sadiq, responding to the concerns raised by the opposition, said the production order of Jamshed Dasti had been issued.

“Today, I received a request letter. The production order has been issued,” he said.

Citing the examples of Kanwar Naveed, Shah Jahan Baloch and Nawaz Wasan, the speaker said that they had also sent him a written application for issuance of the production order.

“Soon after receiving application, I issued the production order,” he said, establishing a fact that rules and regulations were followed without any discrimination.

Some of the opposition lawmakers were also holding placards inscribed with slogans “Jamshed Dasti ko riha karo [release Jamshed Dasti]”.

The house also witnessed uproar during the speech of the opposition leader, when he criticised the government.

MNA and former captain Safdar from the treasury benches and Shireen Mazari from the opposition also traded barbs.

The government side in Monday’s National Assembly proceedings did not wind up debate on the federal budget 2017-2018 as Finance Minister Ishaq Dar was abroad.

Earlier, opposition leader Syed Khursheed Shah said that the speaker had power to issue production order under rule-108 without any application from concerned MNA.

“Let’s see, how Punjab government will react on production order from the chair [speaker],” he said,

“Jamshed Dasti was arrested after the presidential address to the joint parliament,” he said, ostensibly pointing out that Dasti was arrested for making rumpus in the house on that day.

Dasti, during the presidential address, had raised anti-government slogans and blew loud whistles near the speaker’s podium.

The speaker, while responding to the concerns, clarified that the presidential address was on June 1 and MNA Jamshed Dasti was arrested on June 8 on some other allegations by the Punjab police.

PTI’s Shah Mehmood Qureshi said that there was no value of budget 2017-2018.

“Without participation of opposition in [the] budget, the parliament has become redundant,” he said.

Qureshi also criticised the Punjab government for not allowing some of the opposition members to meet Dasti in jail.

“Why Dasti is kept in a cell designated for terrorists...This is unfair,” he said.

Muhammad Safdar, taking the floor, in an emotional tone said that the PML-N would thwart “conspiracies” of the PTI Chief Imran Khan against the development projects in the country. “Despite all the conspiracies, the PML-N would be once again win the 2018 polls,” he said.

Another PML-N MNA Sheikh Rohail Asghar asked the chair to share the parliamentary committee report about Jamshed Dasti’s allegation against some lawmakers for allegedly being involved in “objectionable activities” including use of liquor.

“This report should be shared with the house to expose his real face,” he said, mentioning that Dasti had attempted to malign fellow legislators.

It is relevant to mention here that the parliamentary probe body had termed the claims “baseless” in their collective findings.

The seven-member parliamentary body in its fifth meeting reached consensus view that all the allegations of the MNA from southern Punjab could not prove correct.

Speaker NA Ayaz Sadiq, before the formation of the committee in clear terms, had commented that the house would decide the fate/punishment of the independent MNA if the allegations were proven “baseless”.