The Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N), accompanied by parliamentarians from other opposition parties, on Thursday held a "mock National Assembly session" outside the Parliament House to protest the arrest of Leader of Opposition in National Assembly Shahbaz Sharif, DawnNewsTV reported.
Members of opposition parties gathered in great numbers outside Parliament House, with some of them holding placards with anti-government slogans written on them. Former NA speaker Ayaz Sadiq chaired the mock session, in which a 'call to attention’ notice was also presented regarding the arrest of Shahbaz Sharif.
Earlier this week, the PML-N had demanded that Shahbaz Sharif, who is currently in the National Accountability Bureau’s (NAB) custody, should be brought to parliament so he can present his case before the people of the country.
Sharif has been arrested on the charge that he tried to influence the transfer of a contract for the Ashiana Housing Scheme from one contractor to another.
On Wednesday, NA Speaker Asad Qaiser issued directives to convene the session requested by opposition parties on October 17. Additionally, the NA Secretariat also issued production orders to ensure the presence of Shahbaz Sharif for that session.
The opposition parties, however, were adamant they would protest outside Parliament House, saying the NA Speaker had not accepted their demand for an NA session this week.
While addressing the mock session, PML-N Senator Mushahid Hussain said that Nawaz Sharif and Maryam Nawaz were put behind bars ahead of the general elections and now they have arrested Shahbaz Sharif ahead of the by-polls.
Leaders of the opposition parties were of the view that Shahbaz Sharif's arrest was tantamount to humiliating the parliament and that the House condemned the arrest of the opposition leader.
The opposition members further said that no hindrance should be made in the production of Shahbaz Sharif for the NA session next week.
Meanwhile, the NA spokesperson said that calling a 'mock' session by the opposition, despite summoning the NA session before completion of 14 days period and issuance of production order of Shahbaz Sharif was against the parliamentary traditions.
In a statement, he said the NA speaker has fulfilled all demands of the opposition but still the opposition conducted the session outside the Parliament House, which had no any justification.