ISLAMABAD, March 17, 2014: The provincial minister for Finance initiated pre-budget debate in the Punjab Assembly on Monday during 7th sitting of the ongoing 7th session, says Free and Fair Election Network (FAFEN) in its Daily Factsheet. The pre-budget discussion continued for seven minutes.
Provincial Minister for Law presented report on the incident of self-immolation of a rape victim in Muzaffargarh.
A PML-N lawmaker moved calling attention notice (CAN) regarding robbery at the residence of a lady doctor in Gujranwala and demanded that a report be presented in the House. However, the second CAN by another PML-N lawmaker regarding the kidnapping of 20 women for ransom from Dera Ghazi Khan was deferred following the assurance of law minister that the government will utilize all resources for their recovery and a detailed report will be presented in the House.
The relevant ministers answered 12 starred questions out of total of 21 on the agenda while the lawmakers raised 41 supplementary questions. Three questions were disposed of while another was deferred.
Five adjournment motions (AMs) were moved in the House; two were disposed of while three were deferred, consuming 15 minutes. Lawmakers also raised seven points of order consuming five minutes and 40 seconds of the proceedings.
The Punjab Assembly lacked quorum and the chair was compelled to adjourn the House following the ringing of bells for five minutes. PTI lawmaker had pointed out lack of quorum.
Following are some key observations of the Parliamentary business:
Members’ Participation in House Proceedings:
- The Punjab Assembly met for three hours and 14 minutes.
- The sitting started at 1605 hours against the scheduled time of 1500 hours, witnessing a delay of an hour and five minutes.
- A total of 41 members were present at the start and 65 at the adjournment while a maximum of 89 at a point during the proceedings.
- The Deputy Speaker chaired the entire sitting except for 47 minutes prayer break.
- The Chief Minister did not attend the sitting while the Leader of the Opposition was present for an hour and nine minutes.
- The parliamentary leaders of PPPP and JI attended the sitting.
- Five minority members were present.
- No member applied for the leave.
Representation and Responsiveness
- The provincial minister for communication and works responded to 12 of 21 starred questions (requiring oral as well as written replies). Five of the starred questions were disposed of, two deferred while the others could not be taken up. The members also asked 41 supplementary questions.
Order and Institutionalization
- The lawmakers discussed the incident of self immolation of a rape victim in Muzaffargarh while speaking on seven points of order that consumed five minutes and forty seconds.
- ‘Orders of the day’ was available to the legislators, observers and others.
- Information on members’ attendance was unavailable to observers and the public.
The Daily Factsheet is based on direct observation of Punjab Assembly proceedings conducted by PATTAN Development Organization, a member organization of FAFEN
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