Joint Parliament Session, Govt pass use of EVM and other bills with majority
A Joint Session of the Parliament has been summoned by President Dr. Arif Alvi on Wednesday (today) as the government looks to get 22 bills approved.
The Joint Parliament sitting will start at 12 pm noon in which government will present 22 bills. One of the major and important bill will be the usage of electronic voting machines (EVMs) in the upcoming general elections of 2023.
Opposition is ready to oppose the bills in the Parliament and termed it as “black law”. The top leadership of the opposition has prepared the strategy to oppose the bills.
It will all come down to the number game today as both sides have almost the same number of supporters and votes.
The government enjoys a slight advantage as they have 221 votes in the shape of 42 senators and 179 MNAs.
Meanwhile, the opposition has 57 senators and 162 MNAs which makes their total tally to 219 votes.
There is just a difference of two votes but the past history tells that anything can happen and nothing can be decided before the official voting count and announcement.
There were some reservations of the government’s allies regarding the bills. But reports suggest that the reservations have been cleared away by the government.
It was confirmed yesterday when Muttahida Qaumi Movement-Pakistan (MQM-P) leader Syed Aminul Haque announced to extend their support to the PTI led government.
However, the situation of the Pakistan Muslim League Quaid Group (PML-Q) is still unclear. Their leadership looks unhappy with the PTI administration. PML-Q also expressed their concerns regarding the rising inflation and the current situation of the country.
Yesterday, the head of the Pakistan Democratic Movement (PDM) Maulana Fazl ur Rahman claimed that PTI was pressurizing their allies for support to get the presented bills approved in the Parliament.
Other than the usage of EVMs, electoral reforms, voting rights for overseas Pakistanis will be important bills that will be talked upon.
The government as well as the opposition is looking confident while talking to the media. Both sides say that the end result will come in their favor.
As per the sources, Jahangir Tareen’s group will be present in the Joint Parliament Session today to support the federal government.
Prime Minister Imran Khan looks confident about the session today. When asked about the situation, Imran Khan replied “when in the ground, a player always aims to do better than the other player.”
Meanwhile, opposition leader Shehbaz Sharif has told that the opposition numbers are complete to tackle the government.
The Joint Parliament Session has started.
Opposition leader Shehbaz Sharif is currently addressing the Parliament.
Shehbaz Sharif termed the EVM as an “Evil Vicious Machine”. The opposition leader demands the Session be called off and there should be discussions about the bills. “Election Commission of Pakistan rejected EVM on the basis of constitution and laws,” said Shehbaz Sharif.
Shehbaz Sharif further mentioned that only eight countries use Electronic Voting Machines. He said, “even Germany has rejected the idea of EVM, they are so better in technology than us but still Germany rejected it.”
“There is no question about it,” said Opposition leader about overseas Pakistani voting rights. But Shehbaz mentioned that the government is using overseas Pakistanis names for their own advantage.
Minister of Foreign Affairs Shah Mehmood Qureshi is now addressing the Parliament’s Joint Session.
“It is a historic day that as previous negligences will be washed away […] We wanted to demonstrate the machine usage but got no positive reply,” said Qureshi.
Qadir Mandokhail interfered during the session after which Speaker of National Assembly Asad Qaiser ordered that MNA Qadir be escorted from the house.
Now co-chairman of the Pakistan People Party is addressing the Parliament.
“The government is betraying the opposition as well the citizens of Pakistan,” said Bilawal.
Bilawal further added that “they are trying to make upcoming elections controversial from today […] this government is going to give NRO to Indian spy.”
“Before forming the government, Imran Khan used to say that he will commit suicide instead of going to IMF,” said Bilawal Bhutto.
Asad Mehmood is now expressing his opinion in Parliament.
“Even if the government pass the bills, the people of Pakistan will not accept this one-sided approval of the bills,” said Asad Mehmood.
Prime Minister Imran Khan has reached the Parliament to attend the Joint Session.
Agenda item 4 is currently being presented in the Joint Session of Parliament.
The voting procedure is underway. The bill has been passed after 221 votes in the favor of the bill while 203 votes opposed the bill. Overseas Pakistani will have the right to vote in upcoming general elections.
Senator Taj Haider has objected to the votes count. He has requested the votes to be recounted.
Speaker Asad Qaiser has replied that there is no error in the voting count. The opposition is protesting in Parliament.
The opposition walked out of the Parliament in protest.
The Joint Parliament Session has resumed and the bills passing process have been started again.
Multiple bills have been approved in Parliament.
Electoral reforms and the usage of EVM bills have been passed in the Joint Parliament Session.