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Govt avoiding debate on Bush visit, Balochistan issue

13 March, 2006

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ISLAMABAD, March 13(Online): Joint opposition in Senate criticized the government for trying to suppress the opposition in the House in an effort to avoid debate on Balochistan issue, President George Bush Pak-visit and on relations with China under an organized plan, on Sunday.

Speaking to journalists in a press conference Raza Rabbani accused the government benches and chairman of spoiling a very pleasant atmosphere.

He said the oath-taking process, election of chairman and deputy-chairman and than exchange of kudos took place in a pleasant atmosphere.

The chairman wrongly gave the floor to the Prime Minister instead of the leader of the house.

There are separate ways for special sitting.

Going against the parliamentary tradition Mandokhel was made to sit without letting him complete his speech.

Till today the competing candidates can speak at any length.

He criticized the biased attitude taken by Chairman Senate in letting government members speak and stopping opposition from replying.

Permission that too for few minutes to speak was given due to opposition leader and former leader of the house.

Fake cases were registered against MPA in NWFP.

And we can see state terrorism in the province of Punjab.

We go by law and fight for the rights of people in the house.

Derogatory remarks were used against Senator Safdar Abbasi.

Joint opposition was forced to stage a walkout.

We didnít come to the house to sit deaf and dumb, he added.

Senate Chairman Mian Muhammad Soomroís attitude was inappropriate.

Senator Gul Naseeb said the present attitude adopted by the government would pave the way for a martial law rule in the country.

He blamed the government of suppressing the opposition through dictatorial measures.

Earlier, in an ensuing violent conflict which preceded Prime Ministerís speech in the senate, harsh words and threatening gestures were exchanged between both benches, with Senator Raza Rabbani accusing Chairman of lacking due spirit of tolerance.

Senator Safdar Abassi, was most volatile, whence he refused to heed to Chairmanís remonstrations and retorted in a very rude and harsh manner.

Earlier, Chairman hopeful senator Abdul Rahim Mandukhel, congratulated the newly elected Chairman, and hoped Mr Soomro would represent the entire Federation. He also thanked all opposition parties on behalf of PukhtoonKhwa Milli Party chairman Mahmood Achakzai for supporting his nominations as aspirant for Chairman slot. At this point the newly appointed Chairman refrained Mr. Mandukhel from carrying on his speech.

The Federal Minister for Shipping and Ports, Babar Ghouri congratulated the newly elected chairman, expressing his happiness over the success of the House.

Senator Wasim Sajjad handed over his turn to senator Raza Rabbani, who expressed his dismay over Chairmanís lack of tolerance during Mr. Mandokhel speech. He also complained of the pressure, which according to him had been exerted on the MPAs.

Senator Raza Rabbani also complained about Prime Minister referring to the overall democratic situation in the country, which should have been limited to senate only, upon which Chairman Senate claimed that the PM had referred to Senate.

Senator Kamil Ali Agha also lost his cool, for a while, demanding to be equally heard.

Senator Waqar Ali lauded the transparent and fair way the senate elections had been conducted. In view of this, he was at loss to comprehend the tussle that had marred the opening day of the August House.

Dr. Khalid Ranjha considered it an outrage to dignity of official benches to remain quiet in front of such an outrage.

Deputy Chairman Jan Mohamamd Jamali demanded respect, which would have to be tendered.

Senator Wasim Sajjad expressed his deep dismay at the proceedings on a day, which accounted for sagacity and respect, due to its very nature. He also cautioned against such a rowdy behavior in future.

Senator Tariq Azeem also castigated opposition and senator Safdar Abassi for their rowdy behavior.

Senator Mushahid Hussain Syed also lauded the victory of the newly elect duo.



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