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Slow down!: MQM, PPP MPAs fired up over wages bill

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KARACHI: Sindh Assembly one again revived acrimony between the treasury and opposition members over the legislation of the Sindh Payment of Wages Bill, 2015. The lawmakers not only criticised each other’s performance but also shouted slogans against each other and tore up the agenda copies.

The bill, which was referred to the standing committee around 11 months ago, came back to the assembly without any feedback or amendments apparently because it could not even hold a single meeting to review the proposed draft.

The uproar marred the proceedings presided over by deputy speaker Shehla Raza, when the opposition sought more time to review the bill as members were willing to move some amendments. The government was, however, adamant to pass the bill, given the delays.

Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf parliamentary leader Samar Ali Khan suggested the government take the federal government into confidence before passing this important law to avoid any conflict. Opposition leader Khawaja Izharul Hasan suggested writing a letter to the federal government.

Parliamentary minister Nisar Khuhro explained that this was a federal law and the Sindh government was just fulfilling its responsibility to pass the bill because it was a mandatory practice after the 18th Amendment.

“There is no need to seek the federal government’s guidance because the provinces are independent to make their own laws and look after the labourers working in the province,” he remarked.

The opposition members clarified their position and said they were not against the law but it should not be passed within mere minutes. “We have conveyed our grievances, now you have majority in the house to decide the fate of this bill,” said Hasan, cautioning that it will be an injustice to impose the law without due consideration. “We are also well-wishers and sons of Sindh. It is not the Muttahida Qaumi Movement (MQM) but someone else who devastated Sindh,” said Hasan.

Khuhro referred to the standing committee headed by MQM MPA Syed Khalid Ahmed and said, “This bill was sent to the committee 11 months ago but the chairperson did not call a single meeting and yet they [MQM members] are calling themselves ‘sons of Sindh’.”

Khuhro’s words added fuel to the fire, as Pakistan Peoples Party (PPP) and MQM members came face to face and began shouting at each other. Deputy speaker Raza warned to suspend the proceedings but uproar continued unabated.

Khuhro also became emotional and criticised the MQM. “These people always pursue their specific agendas

Article source: News Source

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