The lower house of Pakistan’s parliament has been adjourned for an indefinite period without discussing or approving a resolution to expel the French ambassador.
When the National Assembly session commenced under the chairmanship of Deputy Speaker Qasim Suri, members of the opposition wanted to discuss the resolution. However, the Speaker started the Question Hour.
Opposition groups surrounded the dice of the speaker after Qasim Suriadjourned the session for an indefinite period after only 15 minutes of proceedings.
Earlier on April 20, Amjad Ali Khan Niazi, a member of the ruling party, moved a resolution in the House to expel the French ambassador over the issue of the blasphemous caricatures.
Opposition parties, the PML-N and the Jamiat Ulema-e-Islam (JUI-F), signalled their support for the resolution and demanded a joint resolution. The Pakistan People’s Party (PPP) did not participate in the process.
The resolution was not on the agenda
The resolution regarding the French ambassador was not mentioned in the agenda of Friday’s meeting and the Secretariat of the National Assembly had issued a nine-point agenda for the normal proceedings and agendas of the government.
Opposition leaders, speaking to reporters outside Parliament House after the session was adjourned without discussing the resolution, described the move as a setback in government policy.
On the other hand, the Speaker of the National Assembly Asad Qaiser has sent letters to the parliamentary leaders of all parties in the House asking them to propose the names of the members to join the proposed special committee to consider the resolution to expel the French ambassador.