ISLAMABAD - The quorum issue left the Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz government red-faced in Friday’s National Assembly session, prompting an opposition member to point out the lack of strength to run the proceedings.

The lack of the required strength (86 MNAs) and the absence of Minister for Water Resources Javed Ali Shah in the House to respond to a call-attention notice about IRSA, forced the opposition to stage a walkout.

Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf MNA Shireen Mazari, taking advantage of the situation, rushed to point out the lack of quorum in the House, forcing the chair to suspend the proceedings for over half-an-hour. The required quorum could not be completed when the House resumed.

Earlier, the House could take up only one agenda item about the recent cutting of 30 to 40 years old trees to widen roads in Islamabad.

Parliamentary Secretary for Interior Muhammad Afzal Khan Dandla, responding to a call-attention notice by Naema Kishwar Khan, told the House that the local administration uprooted the trees with the permission of the environment department.

Dhandla said that the Capital Development Authority has planned to plant 10 times more trees to compensate those trees to be cut for the execution of any developmental project.

“There is no proper machinery to uproot big trees,” he said while alluding to pulling out trees safely for re-plantation. He said that the authority was planning to plant trees alongside development projects.

Mazari, on a point of order, said that Parliament should properly implement its resolutions. “It was mentioned in one of the resolutions that an official of the same rank or position will meet with a foreign guest visiting Pakistan,” Mazari said while mentioning that US Secretary of State Rex Tillerson last month met with the prime minister and the army chief.

Another MNA Kihwar Zehra, on point of order, raised the objection that disabled persons had not been not properly mentioned in the 6th population census.

 

 

JAVAID-UR-RAHMAN