ISLAMABAD, May 16, 2018: The Punjab Assembly passed 12 government bills on Wednesday while suspending the regular legislative procedure for half of these bills, observes Free and Fair Election Network (FAFEN) in its Daily Factsheet.
Following are key observations of the House proceedings during third sitting of the 36th session:
- The Punjab Assembly met for two hours and seven minutes; however, the proceedings remained suspended for 11 minutes due to absence of Provincial Secretary for Agriculture.
- The sitting started at 1303 hours against the scheduled time 1000 hours.
- The Speaker presided over the sitting for one and a half hour while the Deputy Speaker chaired the rest of the proceedings.
- The Chief Minister and the Finance Minister did not attend the sitting.
- The Leader of the Opposition attended the proceedings for 23 minutes.
- As many as 63 MPAs (17%) were present at outset and 56 (15%) at adjournment of the sitting.
- The parliamentary leaders of JI and PML-Z attended the sitting.
- As many as six minority lawmakers also attended the sitting.
- Provincial Minister for Human Rights introduced the Punjab Fertilizers Bill 2018. The House referred the bill to the relevant standing committee with the direction to submit its report earlier than May 28, 2018.
- Provincial Minister for Human Rights introduced the Drugs (Punjab Amendment) Bill 2018, the Punjab Legal Aid Bill 2018 and the Punjab Criminal Prosecution Service Inspectorate Bill 2018. The House took the bills in to consideration and passed them after suspending the regular legislative procedure which requires every bill to go through committee stage before its consideration for passage.
- The House passed the Punjab Witness Protection Bill 2018, the Punjab Government Servants Housing Foundation (Amendment) Bill 2018, the Punjab University of Technology Rasul Bill 2018, the Punjab Bonded Labour System (Abolition) (Amendment) Bill 2018, the Explosive Substances (Punjab Amendment) Bill 2018, the Registration (Punjab Amendment) Bill 2018, the Registration (Punjab Second Amendment) Bill 2018, the Punjab Land Revenue (Amendment) Bill 2018 and the Punjab Agricultural Marketing Regulatory Authority Bill 2018. As many as three of these bills were considered after suspension of the requirements of Rule 95 of the Assembly’s Rules of Procedure bills. The Rule provides the procedure for consideration of a bill after the report of the concerned standing committee on the bill is presented in the House.
- Standing Committee on Cooperatives presented its report in the House.
Representation and Responsiveness
- As many as five out of 25 Starred Questions was taken up for answer during the proceedings while 14 questions were disposed of due to absence of the movers and six were deferred. The lawmakers also asked 10 supplementary questions. The Question Hour proceedings remained suspended for 11 minutes due to absence of the Provincial Secretary for Agriculture.
Order and Institutionalization
- The lawmakers raised 10 Points of Order consuming 12 minutes of the proceedings.
- Entire opposition lawmakers staged a five-minute protest against former Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif’s remarks regarding Mumbai attack. The protesting lawmakers wanted to move an out-of-turn resolution against Mr. Sharif; however the Chair did not allow the motion.
- PTI lawmakers pointed out quorum thrice at 1320, 1416 and 1500 hours. However, the quorum was found complete on first and last instance while it was completed after five minutes of bells on second occasion.
- The House was adjourned to meet again on May 17, 2018 at 1000 hours.
- ‘Orders of the Day’ was available to the legislators, observers and public.
- Information on Members’ attendance is available on Punjab Assembly’s website.
The daily factsheet is based on direct observation of the Punjab Assembly proceedings conducted by PATTAN Development Organization – a member organization of FAFEN. Errors and omissions are regretted.
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