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ISLAMABAD: Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) parliamentary advisory board on Friday endorsed the joint opposition’s decision to challenge passage of “controversial” bills passed by the government from the joint session both in the court of law and the parliament, as party president Shehbaz Sharif described it as “suicide attack” on the parliament and the constitution.

The party’s parliamentary advisory board, chaired by Shehbaz Sharif and attended by senior party leadership, was given a detailed briefing on the “controversial” legislation, passed by the government from the joint sitting of the parliament on November 17 despite, strong reservation and protest by the joint opposition.

According to party spokesperson Marriyum Aurangzeb, the meeting strongly condemned the government efforts of bulldozing the legislation in the joint sitting of parliament and decided that the joint opposition would challenge the government’s “fascism and unconstitutionality” inside and outside the parliament.

The joint opposition has already tasked Pakistan Peoples Party (PPP) Farooq H Naek, PML-N Ata Tarar, and Jamiat Ulema-e-Islam-Fazl (JUI-F) Kamran Murtaza to prepare recommendations for challenging the controversial bills in the judiciary that also include legislation with regard to using electronic voting machines (EVMs), the SBP Banking Services Corporation (Amendment) Bill, 2021, the right to review for Indian spy Kulbhushan Jadhav and others.

The PML-N spokesperson said that the meeting was given a detailed briefing on the decision taken by the joint opposition to challenge the “controversial” legislation in the court, adding the meeting condemned the government’s measures with a note that it was for the first time in the country’s history that the government finalised the electoral reforms without evolving a consensus.

Speaking in the meeting, Shehbaz Sharif, who is also leader of the opposition in the National Assembly, maintained that the constitution does not “validate” the legislation done by the joint sitting of the parliament on November 17.

“We reject the “decree” of Imran ‘Niazi’. The government, which has been bombing the people with inflation, carried out a “suicide attack” on the parliament,” he said, adding: “The present government has been disgraced before the people and now it is attacking the Constitution.”

He said that the statement of the Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP) with regard to the electronic voting machine and its reservations are the “proofs” that the government’s position on the EVM and the related legislation is contrary to the facts.

“We will not allow Imran ‘Niazi’ to impose his “monarchy” on Pakistan,” he said, adding that liquefied petroleum gas (LPG), flour, sugar, medicine, electricity, and gas are out of reach of the people.

“The government, which cannot bring down prices of sugar, flour and LPG, when talk about giving low priced homes, is tantamount to rubbing salt into the wounds of the poor,” he said’, while referring to the prime minister’s speech during his visit to “Naya Pakistan Housing Authority’s project, Farash Town Apartments” earlier in the day.

Shehbaz Sharif also appreciated the “unity and spirit” of the joint opposition and hoped that the combined efforts of the opposition parties would bear fruit and give relief to the people.

“Those supporting the ‘oppressors’, ‘enemies’ of the people and the ‘lawbreakers’, are the culprits of the people,” he further maintained.

Copyright Business Recorder, 2021

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