LAHORE - The Punjab Assembly on Wednesday passed nine bills with majority, amid walkout from the opposition.

The treasury also laid ordinance relating to the local government and annual report/post election review 2018 during proceedings on government business.

The session started one hour behind the schedule time with Speaker Ch Parvez Elahi in the chair.

As the chair ruled starting proceedings on government business, the opposition legislators stood up and started chanting slogans against the government. Amid rumpus, law minister Raja Basharat laid the Punjab Local Government (Second Amendment) Ordinance 2019 and the Annual Report/Post Election Review-2018. The opposition staged a walkout to protest against ‘unprecedented legislation’.

The House passed the Punjab Water Bill 2019, the Punjab Seized and Freezed Facilities (Hospitals and Dispensaries) Bill 2019, the Punjab Regularization of Service (Amendment) Bill 2019, the Provincial Employees’ Social Security (Amendment) Bill 2019, the Punjab Khal Panchayat Bill 2019, the Punjab Workers Welfare Fund Bill 2019, the Punjab Aab-e-Pak Authority (Amendment) Bill 2019, the Punjab Minimum Wages Bill 2019 and the Rawalpindi Women University, Rawalpindi Bill 2019 with majority, rejecting all cut motions moved by the opposition legislators.

Earlier, Opposition Leader Hamza Shehbaz accused the government of doing politics on the health of former Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif. He said that it was a pity that one needed to die for proving his/her illness. He said that the ex-PM postponed all political activities for two days and personally visited the hospital to inquire after Imran Khan when he fell from a stage. He said that Health Minister Dr Yasmin Rashid and the medical board admitted serious health conditions of the ex-PM. Despite that, he said, the ministers continued giving uncalled for statements. He said that the same attitude was adopted against his father when he was fighting against cancer. He said the ruling party also did politics on the health of Kulsoom Nawaz. He stressed the need for putting to an end the politics on someone’s health. He thanked MQM, GDA, PML-Q and especially the chair for expressing sympathies with Nawaz Sharif.

Raja Basharat raised the question that why Punjab lacked facilities to diagnose diseases. He said that both the opposition and the treasury were responsible for the prevailing situation. The PML-N ruled the province for 10 years, he said, adding, the PTI was also in power for 14 months. He said that the ex-PM had expressed satisfaction over the health facilities provided to him. In the PTI regime, he said, everyone was getting the same health facilities. He questioned that who was responsible for dysfunctional trauma centre.

 He said that health facilities were politicized in the past and now all should pledge to avoid politics on such issues. On completion of agenda, the chair adjourned the session till Thursday (today) at 3pm.