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PTI leaders huddle together to assess situation

Asad, Hammad, Ijaz Ch, Usman Dar, Moonis Elahi meet MPAs

The senior leadership of Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) thronged Punjab Assembly on Wednesday amid reports of yet another in-house change in Punjab.

PTI Chairman and former Prime Minister Imran Khan have already said in a public rally that a conspiracy is being hatched to topple his Punjab government. It has also been learnt that PML-Q President Ch Shujaat is also active in bringing a change in Punjab as his MPAs can play a decisive role in this. Moreover, PML-N is also confident about reclaiming the throne of Punjab which remained the party’s stronghold for decades. Party’s deputy secretary general and PM’s aide Atta Ullah Tarar has claimed that PML-N will soon form its government in Punjab.

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On Wednesday, senior PTI leadership including Secretary General Asad Umar, Punjab’s General Secretary Hammad Azhar, Usman Dar, Senator Ijaz Chaudhry and other key party leaders spent a busy day in Punjab Assembly despite the fact that they are not members of the this House. Moreover, Moonis Elahi, son of Chief Minister Punjab also reached Punjab Assembly to meet the lawmakers amid the reports of in-house change.

Talking to journalists outside the Punjab Assembly, Moonis Elahi said that they have the required numbers and will get the vote of confidence comfortably. “How will the change be brought?” he questioned and added that “we have already shown the strength of 186 in the past on many occasions”. The parliamentary party of PML-Q has already reposed confidence in Parvez Elahi just yesterday and the PML-N members have lost their minds, Moonis said.

Right after Moonis Elahi came PML-N’s Azma Bukhari for a presser. “Ch Parvez Elahi has proved himself to be Buzdar-plus and he needs to be changed as he doesn’t have time for the flood victims but can arrange public rallies for Imran Khan,” Azma said. She further claimed that the MPAs of PTI and PML-Q are angry with their parties as they were not made part of the cabinet. The government stands on the votes of just two members and it is not a difficult task to topple it.

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Meanwhile, Minister for Local Government Mian Mehmood ur Rasheed termed the talk of in-house change a storm in a teacup. “No change in Punjab is on the cards as both the coalition partners are moving smoothly. A strong government is here in Punjab,” he said. The current party position in Punjab Assembly shows that the 10 MPAs of PML-Q will play a key role in toppling the PTI’s government in Punjab. According to the party position in Punjab Assembly, PTI has 178 MPAs, PML-N 166, PML-Q 10, PPP 7 and Rah-e-Haq party has 1 MPA while there are 6 independent lawmakers in the House. The current opposition enjoys the support of 166 MPAs of PML-N, 7 PPP, 1 Rah-e-Haq and 5 independents. The ruling alliance enjoys the support of 178 PTI MPAs and 10 PML-Q lawmakers. The candidate who will be able to get the support of PML-Q lawmakers will become the leader of the House in the upcoming setup.

Earlier in the day, the government vowed to introduce a new environmental policy while also increasing the number of environmental tribunals. The session of the Punjab Assembly started after a delay of more than two hours behind the scheduled time with Speaker Sabtain Khan in the chair. Questions related to the Environment Department were there on the agenda item. The PMLN legislators came down hard over the PTI government while questioning the inadequate measures being adopted to deal with environmental issues.

Minister for Environment Protection Raja Basharat said that the government is not sitting idle just like the PML-N adding and PTI is the first political party which took initiatives at a massive level to make policies on the subject. The government also passed “The Punjab local government Bill 2021” amid the ruckus of the PML-N-led opposition. PML-N lawmakers also pointed out the quorum but Speaker didn’t pay any heed and continued the proceedings that provoked the opposition to leave the House in protest. The session was later adjourned to meet again on September 28 at 3 pm after a gap of two weeks.

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