LAHORE-For the first time in the history of Punjab Assembly, the provincial legislature is holding its budget session at a local hotel instead of the Assembly chambers, thanks to the COVID-19 pandemic which seems to have upset everything on earth.

The budget session is starting from June 5 (Friday) which is likely to continue for 22 days.

Though the government has not yet announced any precise date for presentation of the provincial budget, it is most likely to be presented on June 15 following the presentation of the federal budget on June 12.

Meanwhile, arrangements have been made to hold the upcoming Assembly session at Faletti’s hotel Lahore against a payment of Rs 0.3 million (3 lac) per day.

According a notification issued by the Assembly secretariat, Speaker Punjab Assembly has declared the Crystal and Royal Grands Hall of the Faletti’s hotel as “Chamber” within the meaning of Rule 2 (1) (f) of the Assembly Rules of Procedure for the purpose of holding the Assembly session.

It may be mentioned here that present Punjab Assembly chamber can accommodate only 130 members or so at a time if the mandatory six-feet physical distance is to be maintained.

Earlier, Punjab Governor Ch Mohammad Sarwar authorized Assembly Speaker Ch Parvez Elahi to hold the Assembly sittings at an appropriate place if it was not possible to maintain social distancing at the Assembly chambers.