Sindh Assembly sees chaos as PTI, PPP members clash

Published March 3, 2021
A view of the scuffle in the Sindh Assembly on Tuesday. — DawnNewsTV
A view of the scuffle in the Sindh Assembly on Tuesday. — DawnNewsTV

KARACHI: A day after the Pakistan Tehreek-i-Insaf alleged that three of its MPAs from Sindh had gone “missing”, the provincial assembly witnessed an ugly physical brawl between members of the PTI and Pakistan Peoples Party on Tuesday as soon as the missing members entered the house and the former tried to get hold of them ahead of the Senate election.

In the ensuing chaos, PTI lawmakers managed to whisk away MPA Karim Bakhsh Gabol out of the assembly, but two others — Shahryar Shar and Aslam Abro — left the house reportedly with PPP members.

While Leader of the Opposition in the Sindh Assembly Haleem Adil Sheikh accused the PPP of kidnapping PTI members, Sindh Information Minister Nasir Shah rejected the allegation and said MPAs Gabol, Abro and Shar had expressed reservations over their party’s nominations for Senate elections.

It became almost a free-for-all situation in the house after the PTI’s Gabol along with two other “disgruntled” party fellows, Shar and Abro, reached the assembly hall. PPP members gave them a warm welcome by desk thumping.

It all started when PTI MPAs tried to take away their ‘disgruntled’ colleague

While MPA Gabol, who had earlier issued a video and refused to vote for the PTI’s candidates for Senate election, sat on the opposition benches after marking his attendance and the two other disgruntled PTI MPAs were chatting with the PPP members, a bunch of PTI members moved to Mr Gabol and made him walk towards the lobby apparently in friendly manner.

The PTI members’ endeavour led to a physical fight between the MPAs of the ruling and opposition parties as a vigilant Parliamentary Affairs Minister Mukesh Kumar Chawla and other PPP members intercepted the PTI lawmakers.

Later, the PPP claimed that they tried to prevent Mr Gabol’s “kidnapping” by his party colleague while the PTI termed it an internal party matter.

Deputy Speaker Rehana Leghari, who was in chair, tried her best to calm down the situation, repeatedly asking the fighting members to maintain order in the house, but to no avail.

Finally, she had to adjourn the session till Thursday when the situation went out of control.

While the scuffle between the two parties continued even after the adjournment, the PTI managed to take Mr Gabol’s custody. The PTI members escorted Mr Gabol out of the assembly and he was driven away along with Khurram Sher Zaman and Raja Azhar Khan.

Later, the members of the PPP and the PTI made allegations and counter allegations, holding press conferences and releasing video footage of the incident taken on their cellphones.

In one of the videos, MPA Gabol was heard saying” “Mujhe PP Walay Aghwa Ker Rahe Hain. Mujhe Vote Nahin Dena PP Ko (PPP men are kidnapping me. I don’t want to vote for PPP).”

Mr Gabol was seen surrounded by his party members in the video recorded by Mr Sher Zaman inside the assembly hall.

Inquiry ordered

Sindh Assembly Speaker Agha Siraj Durrani has ordered an inquiry into the incident and sought a report from the assembly secretary. “It is very sad that such incidents are happening in this august house,” the speaker regretted.

Leader of the Opposition Haleem Adil Sheikh said that they would lodge an FIR against the PPP for “kidnapping” their MPAs.

Flanked by other PTI members at a presser, he alleged that his party’s female MPAs were also manhandled during the scuffle.

PTI Parliamentary Leader Bilal Ahmed Ghaffar said that the incident in the assembly proved their claim about kidnapping of their MPAs.

He asked the Election Commission of Pakistan to take notice of the incident and take those responsible for it to task.

On the other hand, Sindh Information Minister Syed Nasir Hussain Shah rejected the allegations of kidnapping MPAs and said that the PPP believed in democracy and everyone had the right to vote according to his conscience.

Talking to media on the assembly premises, he said that MPA Gabol had expressed displeasure over the PTI policies through a video statement. “Aslam Abro and Shaheryar Khan Shar also expressed reservations over their party’s nominations for Senate elections,” he added.

The minister claimed that senior members of PTI had announced that they would not vote for the party candidates in other provinces too.

Reacting to the incident inside the assembly, he said: “PTI staged drama in Sindh Assembly. PPP has nothing to do with it.”

Published in Dawn, March 3rd, 2021



UAE targeted
Updated 19 Jan, 2022

UAE targeted

MONDAY’S deadly drone strikes by Yemen’s Houthi rebels targeting the UAE, and subsequent retaliatory attacks on...
19 Jan, 2022

New province debate

THE private bill introduced by a PML-N senator seeking a new province in south Punjab amounts to oversimplification...
19 Jan, 2022

Omicron in Karachi

WITH the wedding season in full swing, it is no surprise that the Covid positivity rate in Karachi has been touching...
The establishment pivot
18 Jan, 2022

The establishment pivot

It is a sad reality that the power matrix continues to revolve around the establishment.
18 Jan, 2022

Remittances growth

THE hefty growth in remittances from Pakistanis living abroad continues to defy forecasts to the contrary. New State...
18 Jan, 2022

China-Iran deal

THE China-Iran strategic deal that has recently taken effect is more than just a long-term bilateral agreement...