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ISLAMABAD: The opposition political parties will continue their protest in the National Assembly session today (Friday), as the government plans to move a motion to refer two bills related to election reforms to the joint sitting of the parliament.

The major opposition political parties including the Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) and the Pakistan Peoples Party (PPP) would hold meetings of their respective political parties separately ahead of the National Assembly session, which is scheduled to be held at 11am.

During the parliamentary party meetings - PML-N's to be chaired by Shehbaz Sharif and PPP's by Bilawal Bhutto-Zardari - the opposition parties would chalk out strategy for the whole session of the Lower House of the Parliament, according to insiders.

As per the Order of the Day for the Friday's session, Adviser to the Prime Minister on Parliamentary Affairs Babar Awan would move under sub-rule (7) of rule 154 of the Rules of Procedure and Conduct of Business in the National Assembly, 2007 read with Article 70(3) of the Constitution, that the Elections (Amendment) Bill, 2021, as passed by the National Assembly but not passed by the Senate within the stipulated period of 90 days, be referred to the joint sitting for consideration and passage.

The adviser would also move the Elections (Second Amendment) Bill, 2021, as passed by the National Assembly but not passed by the Senate within the stipulated period of 90 days, be referred to the joint sitting for consideration and passage.

Besides, the opposition would also raise and register its protest over the increase in oil prices, an overall price hike and inflation. According to PML-N Secretary Information Marriyum Aurangzeb, the party would register its protest in the House.

"The masses don't even have enough to feed their families and the arrogant Imran Khan is asking them to buy horses. The people of Pakistan don't have the money to buy flour and sugar for their survival and Imran Khan wants them to buy horses and bicycles," she said.

"Imran Khan is the most taxing and costly item for Pakistan which the country cannot afford. Please go back to where you came from and PML-N will make sugar, flour, gas, medicines, electricity, and petrol affordable for the people of Pakistan once again," she told Prime Minister Khan, while strongly condemning the increase in oil prices and other commodities.

"Imran Khan buys expensive cars for his "ATM Mafia" and tells people to get on ponies and bicycles. Eatables and essentials were on an all-time historic high, while the country was in historic debt with record high deficit," she maintained.

She further stated that the rupee saw record devaluation and the dollar shot beyond visual range, adding that inflation was at an unforeseen high, so was unemployment and "yet Imran Khan was bent on asking people to buy chicken, eggs, calves, goats, and now horses."

PPP secretary general Farhatullah Babar said that the PPP has opposed the two bills related to electoral reforms both in the Senate and its Standing Committee.

He said that his party will also strongly oppose the motion in the National Assembly and together with other opposition political parties would try its level best to block these bills from being referred to the joint sitting of the Parliament.

Copyright Business Recorder, 2021

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