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pakistan
Tuesday May 15 2018
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Punjab Assembly session adjourned amid opposition's protest over Nawaz statement

Opposition members attempted to table a motion against the former premier in the provincial assembly on Tuesday, but they were not allowed by the speaker. — Geo News FILE

LAHORE: Members of the treasury and opposition in the Punjab Assembly faced off each other on Tuesday over a recent controversial statement by former premier Nawaz Sharif pertaining to 2008 Mumbai attacks.

The opposition continued protesting in the assembly for the second day on Tuesday. Members of the opposition parties attempted to table a motion against the former premier, which the speaker did not allow.

At this, opposition members stood up on their seats and started chanting slogans against the ruling party.

Mehmoodur Rasheed, opposition leader in the Punjab Assembly, accused Nawaz of "attacking national security" and said that it was intolerable.

He said the former premier had been issuing such statements to divert attention from corruption references against him. Rasheed further called for action against Nawaz under Article 6 of the constitution.

Nawaz, in a recent interview to Dawn newspaper, had said, “Militant organisations are active. Call them non-state actors, should we allow them to cross the border and kill 150 people in Mumbai? Explain it to me. Why can’t we complete the trial?”

His remarks were played up by the Indian media as an admission of Pakistan's involvement in the terrorist attacks, even though similar questions and statements have been raised from civilian and security officials in Pakistan earlier.

As commotion in the House increased, the speaker adjourned the session for 20 minutes.

This led opposition members to walk out of the assembly hall, who then again started chanting different slogans.

When the session resumed, the opposition members pointed to a lack of quorum, at which the session was adjourned until 10am on May 16.

On Monday, the National Security Committee (NSC) categorically dismissed former premier's statement and unanimously termed it "incorrect and misleading."

"The participants observed that it was very unfortunate that the opinion arising out of either misconceptions or grievances was being presented in disregard of concrete facts and realities," said a statement issued by the PM Office.

The NSC meeting also unanimously "rejected the allegations and condemned the fallacious assertions."

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