Did Opposition learn from its past mistakes?

ISLAMABAD   -   The opposition factions, after the general polls, have never found openly accepting the results, as the ‘rigging mantra’ always echoed in the parliament for initial months.

The expected hullabaloo of the opposition, in the 16th National Assembly, over the controversial results of February 08 elections has exposed the importance of the parliament in the ranks of PTI.

The former ruling party (PTI), in the 15th National Assembly, had opted to tender en-masse resignations from the lower house of the parliament. Former prime minister Imran Khan, in an attempt to compel the government for conducting polls, had made a decision to dissolve assemblies of Khyber Pakhtunkhaw (KPK) and Punjab.

“The resignations from the National Assembly and dissolution of two provincial assemblies would lead to elections in 66 percent of the country within 90 days,” the former PM had shared his plan, which could not be fulfilled due to a plethora of reasons.

The previous caretaker government, despite the dissolution of the two assemblies, enjoyed the longest period of government in the country’s history.

Though the opposition members made allout efforts to re-enter the parliament, the then Speaker National Assembly Raja Perviaz Ashraf had outrightly rejected their demand.

From these past steps taken by the PTI and the current interest of its lawmakers (representing as independent MPs) in the lower house is a contrast.

The opposition, in the last three months, have also not spared a moment pointing out lack of quorum in the house, which is considered the main responsibility of the government.

“If under clause (2) of article 55, at any time during a sitting, attention of the chairperson is drawn to the fact that less than one-fourth of the total membership of the Assembly is present, he shall suspend the business,” according to the rules and procedure.

The attendance and the participation of these opposition members are clearly reflecting the stance of accepting the importance of parliament. For instance, the independent MPs have shown keen interest in the formation of standing committees by taking a lead in submitting their representative names to the Speaker National Assembly.

The opposition, in the current scenario, is chalking out a strategy as to how to strongly register their protest against the budgetary proposals, as the federal government is planning to present the finance bill 2024-25 on 12 June.

The opposition parties are jointly evolving a strategy to give tough time to the coalition government in presenting the federal budget.

The treasury benches have to ensure full presence in the house during the federal budget session to ensure smoothly passing it with its existing majority.

Parliamentary gurus viewed that the senior lawmakers always give importance to the parliament as they know its real importance.

“They often say in their speeches that Parliament is a supreme institution, so the politicians should learn from it,” they said, mentioning that the interest of current opposition in the lower house shows that they have learned the importance of the parliament from their previous actions.