34 members of the opposition and 18 members of the government were absent from the house
Islamabad: The government passed eight bills despite strong opposition protests during a joint sitting of parliament.
The joint sitting of the parliament began under the chairmanship of Speaker Asad Qaiser when 34 members of the opposition and 18 members of the government were absent from the house, due to which the numerical majority of the opposition turned into a minority. During the meeting, Dr. Babar Awan, Parliamentary Affairs Adviser, first moved the Islamabad Waqf Property Bill 2020. When the demand of the opposition was put to a vote, the opposition was defeated by 10 votes, 200 in favor of the movement and 190 against.
During the meeting, PPP leader Senator Raza Rabbani questioned the point of order and said that the decision of the Islamabad High Court regarding Special Assistant and Advisor was clear. Dr Babar Awan is an advisor and not a minister. How did he introduce the bill? Responding to this, Federal Law Minister Barrister Forough Naseem said that only voting on advisers is prohibited. The reference to the decision of the Islamabad High Court did not mention such a thing. He challenged Mian Raza Rabbani to state in writing the decision he referred to. Babar Awan is an advisor, he can introduce bills.
The Islamabad Waqf Property Bill 2020 was then passed by a majority vote in a joint sitting of Parliament. A large number of opposition members approached the speaker and started chanting slogans. About a dozen members of the opposition surrounded the speaker's dice. Murtaza Javed Abbasi tore a copy of the bill and threw it at the Speaker. On the strong protest and demand of the opposition, the Speaker gave the floor to PPP Chairman Bilawal Bhutto Zardari, to which Shah Mehmood Qureshi objected. Only he can be allowed to speak. If there is any amendment of Bilawal Bhutto Zardari, then definitely talk. Opposition members demanded to give floor to the Leader of the Opposition for not giving opportunity to Bilawal Bhutto Zardari. Government members objected to giving the floor to the opposition leader.
Babar Awan read out Rule 131 of the National Assembly and said that no one can speak in the passage of any bill except the member who has submitted the amendment. The Anti-Money Laundering Amendment Bill was then introduced in the House. Shahid Khaqan Abbasi moved an amendment against it and said that the manner in which the meeting was being conducted was not honoring the House. We are not being given a chance to speak. We have 10 to 12 amendments to the bill.
Opposition members walked out of the house to protest against the decision not to allow opposition leader Shahbaz Sharif and PPP chairman Bilawal Bhutto Zardari to speak, which paved the way for the government to legislate. Anti-Money Laundering Second Amendment Bill The Islamabad High Court Amendment Bill and the Surveying and Mapping Amendment Bill were also passed in a joint sitting.
Later, the Anti-Terrorism Amendment Bill, Pakistan Medical Commission Bill, Pakistan Medical Tribunal Bill and Islamabad Disability Rights Bill were also passed by a majority.