Lahore    - Without clarifying that whether PDM will be allowed to hold public rally in Gujranwala or not, the government made it clear that no one will be allowed to speak against state institutions while sitting abroad. 

 “No one will be allowed to take law into hand. The opposition will be informed about status of public gathering before October 16,” said Law Minister Raja Basharat while responding to the opposition motion at the Punjab Assembly on Monday. 

The session started two and half hour behind the scheduled time with Deputy Speaker Sardar Dost Muhammad Mazari in the chair. 

Answers related to the Communication and Works Department were given by Parliamentary Secretary Sardar Shahb-ud-Din during the question-hour. 

Although general discussion on price control was supposed to be held but the focus was the PDM ‘Jalsa’ in Gujranwala.  

Raja Bashrat said that the opposition will be allowed to hold public gathering only within the limits of the law and no one will be allowed to raise provocative slogans against the state institutions.

“None will be allowed to criticize institutions or initiate conflict with law-enforcers,” he said while responding to PML-N’s Samiullah Khan’s motion. 

He said raising of slogans containing words referring to guns and boots during political gatherings was inappropriate, while it would never allow anyone sitting abroad to make provoking statements against institutions.

Earlier, amid slogans of ‘traitor’ raised by the treasury benches, Samiullah Khan talked of double standards in deciding one’s loyalties, saying he could produce at least 16 video clips of various TV channels in which Imran Khan had spoken against state institutions.

He recalled that Chaudhry Pervaiz Elahi had claimed in the past that Gen Shuja Pasha forced PML-Q men to join PTI.

He asked whether Gen Kayani and Gen Pasha were not from any institution as they were openly alleged to be involved in active politics by various politicians. 

He said that PML-N government facilitated PTI in holding multiple rallies in the past. He urged Law Minister to give a clear policy statement about opposition’s Gujranwala protest meeting.

He alleged that opposition workers were being picked up from their homes to fail the Oct 16 show.

During general discussions on price-hike and law and order, PPP’s Makhdoom Usman lamented that house standing committees could not be made functional though the assembly had come into being two years ago, while the opposition leader was behind the bars for one and half years.

He regretted that the Prime Minister would mimic ailing opposition leaders and parliamentarians, prices of medicines, gas and powers have been increased multiple times, while transfer of Punjab Inspector General of Police (IGP) five times in two years speaks volumes of the state of governance.

Industries Minister Mian Aslam Iqbal, while summing up the discussion on price-hike, said the Opposition had requisitioned the session to discuss inflation but not a single MPA of the PML-N put up any suggestion to control the situation.

He said the only agenda of the Opposition is how to get their leaders released from prisons and do money laundering.

He alleged that the previous N government had wasted Rs450 billion through so-called Sasti Roti scheme allowing its sympathizers to mint money.

He said 20-kg wheat flour bag was available for Rs860 each while the same was being sold in Sindh against Rs1,500 and claimed that there was no price-hike in Punjab rather prices of essentials were completely under control.

On completion of agenda, the chair adjourned the session till today (Tuesday) at 2pm.