Punjab Assembly condemns Biden’s aspersions on nukes

The Punjab Assembly on Monday passed a resolution with majority strongly condemning US President Joe Biden’s remarks on Pakistan’s nuclear weapons.

The opposition led by PML-N kept insisting on removing the word “imported government” from the resolution but the government rejected its demand. As the resolution was moved, PML-N MPA and former Speaker Rana Iqbal objected to the use of the term “imported government” in the resolution and demanded its removal. The demand was rejected by Minster Ali Afzal Sahi, who was the mover of the said resolution. “The House strongly condemns US President Joe Biden’s remarks on Pakistan’s nuclear weapons. Pakistan is one of the most important, responsible and sole Islamic nuclear state amongst the world’s largest seven nuclear countries,” the resolution stated.

It further added that that Pakistan’s nuclear weapons are in safe hands and there shouldn’t be any doubt about it. The world, it said, recognizes that “our nuclear command and control system is one of the safest in the world. Pakistan knows well how to protect its nuclear assets”. It said America has been involved in different wars and used nuclear weapons twice on innocent civilians. Terming President Biden’s statement tantamount to an attack on Pakistan’s independence and sovereignty, the resolution said the US president’s statement not only proved negligence but also revealed a failed foreign policy of the “imported government”.

Earlier in the day, senior PTI’s lawmaker Chaudhry Zaheer ud Din paid rich tribute to his party Chairman Imran Khan over his landmark victory in the by-polls in which he clinched six out of seven seats. “My leader defeated the alliance of 14 parties, also backed by the Election Commission of Pakistan,” he said amid huge sloganeering in favor of Imran Khan.

Zaheerud Din also demanded fair and free general elections, saying it is a moral obligation that respect and honour be given to the mandate of the people who again showed what they actually wanted. As the proceedings commenced, the opposition lawmakers came down hard on the provincial government for its alleged negligence in providing clean drinking water, patchwork on roads and proper street lights to different areas of the province. However, the government expelled the impression that it was doing nothing.

Meanwhile, Minister for Local Government Mian Mehmoodur Rasheed took action against an official who was reportedly sleeping during duty hours. The lawmakers asked questions about local government and community development departments to which Rasheed gave answers. PML-N’s Munibul Haq challenged the minister’s reply that 52 per cent of clean drinking water is being served to the population of PP-189 Okara.

The session of Punjab Assembly started after the delay of more than two hours from its scheduled time, with Deputy Speaker Wasiq Qayum Abbasi in the chair. Minister for Local Government Mian Mehmood ur Rasheed responded to the queries of lawmakers related to his department during the question-hour. The session was later adjourned to meet again today (Tuesday) afternoon.

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