Opposition walk-out in NA budget session
ISLAMABAD – The opposition on Wednesday walked out the proceedings of the National Assembly budget session, blaming the coalition government for their disinterest in budgetary proposals by the opposition benches.
Opposition leader in the National Assembly Raja Riaz Ahmed, on a point of order, criticized the coalition government for not ensuring required strength in the national assembly during the budget session. “There is disinterest in the budget session of the national assembly. The treasury benches members are present during the proceedings. Even no concerned member is here to take the notes of speeches,” said the opposition leader and announced a walkout from the proceedings over the absence of MNAs in the proceedings.
The lawmakers from opposition also left the house in protest with him but they avoided pointing out lack of quorum in the house. Minister Qadir Patel rushed to take the floor, ensuring the chair that concerned members and staff from the ministry were taking the notes of the speeches in the house. The opposition, over the request of the minister, rejoined the house.
PML-N senior Sheikh Rohail Asghar, about the thin presence of treasury benches lawmakers in the house, said that the level of seriousness in the budgetary proposals can be gauged with the presence of the members. “Concerned members from treasury benches should take the house seriously,” he said. A member from Grand Democratic Alliance (GDA) Saira Bano also came down hard on the government for running the budget session with the thin presence. “Is it a budget session? Members are not taking interest in the proceedings,” said a GDA member. Minister for Climate Change Sherry Rehman, taking part in the budget debate, criticized the PTI’s government for putting the country on a ventilator.
Disinterest of Treasury over the proposals
“Present government has taken the responsibility in difficult situation. It was a tough decision but the government opted to save the country,” she said, adding that there was a need for collective effort to address the economic constraints in the country. She further said that there was a need for taking durable and sustainable steps to save the country’s water resources.
MNA from treasury benches Waheed Alam said the PTI government is responsible for the current dire economic situation of the country. “The government should exploit the potential of renewable energy including solar and wind to address energy woes,” he said adding that gas and electricity pilferage should be checked.
MNA Chaudhary Faqir Ahmad , sharing his budgetary proposals, said there was a need to further strengthen the health sector to ensure the people get the best medical facilities.
Other MNAs from treasury benches said there was in the previous government era in the sector health. They appreciated the incumbent government for presenting a balanced budget in tough economic conditions. They said effort has been made to put minimum burden on the common man. They said the people should be encouraged to make investments in different sectors.
They also blamed that the prices of petroleum products and electricity were increasing due to flawed policies of the previous government. They also proposed that the national political leadership should sit together to free the country from the shackles of international financial institutions.