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Minister Ali Zaidi storms out of meeting as Opposition rejects bills

Federal Minister for Maritime Affairs Ali Zaidi is severely disappointed at the Opposition's rejection. He also walked out of the Senate standing committee meeting after a heated exchange of arguments with the Opposition senators who criticized him for his “unparliamentary behavior.”

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Monday, Federal Minister for Maritime Affairs Ali Zaidi expressed anger at opposition rejecting 3 bills proposed by the government. He claimed that the rejection is due to opposition playing politics.

He also walked out of the Senate Standing Committee meeting after a heated exchange of arguments with the opposition senators. As a result, the opposition criticized him for his “unparliamentary behavior” and use of inappropriate remarks.

The committee’s chairperson, Rubina Khalid of PPP, rejected the bills. The bills were the Port Qasim Authority (Amendment) Bill, 2021; the Pakistan National Shipping Corporation (Amendment) Bill, 2021; and the Gwadar Port Authority (Amendment) Bill, 2021.

Read more: PTI leaders swing into action to obtain opposition approval for crucial FATF-related bill

Rubina Khalid cast her own vote against the government bills after a tie. According to the opposition, the bills were “unconstitutional” as well as in violation of the Supreme Court’s judgment.

This triggered Minister Ali Zaidi who demanded the opposition members to submit their objections in writing.

“These bills had already been passed by the Ministry of Maritime Affairs, Ministry of Law and Justice, the federal cabinet, the National Assembly’s committee, and finally the National Assembly. Are all these donkeys who had passed these bills?” Minister Ali Zaidi enraged, prompting a strong protest by the opposition members, who termed these remarks unparliamentary and uncalled for.

Politics at play?

Taking to Twitter, the Federal Minister for Maritime Affairs Ali Zaidi expressed that “politics won over common sense and national interest.”

He also vowed to present the bills before the Senate for a final vote despite their rejection by the committee.

In June, the PTI government passed 21 bills, including the ones recently rejected by the Opposition. The government bulldozed the bills in the absence of Opposition members.

Read more: In a historic move, Pakistan’s national assembly passed 21 bills in single day

The Opposition then strongly protested the undue and unnecessary haste in passing the legislation and suspending the rules of the business of the house. They accused the PTI government of rejecting all the recommendations of the Opposition.

Therefore, according to Minister Ali Zaidi, the Opposition is retaliating by rejecting the bills despite their approval by the Ministry of Maritime Affairs, Ministry of Law and Justice, the federal cabinet, the National Assembly’s committee, and the National Assembly.