NA passes budget


Staff Reporter


The National Assembly on Monday passed the Finance Bill 2020-21 with a voice vote, after debates and amendments. Earlier, the government defeated the opposition with 160-119 votes at the time of passage of clause nine of the bill.
Prime Minister Imran Khan joined the session halfway as the speaker listed each clause and amendment.
Asad Umar, taking to Twitter after the passing of the bill, said: “Tall claims made by the opposition and some sensationalist analysis by the media over the last few days and the result is that the 29-vote majority — through which last year’s budget was passed — has increased to 41 votes.”
He also congratulated all colleagues and workers of the PTI. Earlier, while addressing the parliament, Minister for Industries Hammad Azhar said that session was meant to move amendments to the finance bill and pass it, yet the opposition was resorting to personal attacks.
He accused the opposition of shouting “na manzoor” (unacceptable) even before the budget was presented in the parliament. “I expected there would be concrete arguments [today] but the opposition is making personal attacks — this is the level of their seriousness,” said Azhar.
Muttahida Majlis-i-Amal’s Maulana Asad Mehmood and PTI’s Ali Amin Gandapur exchanged hot words over each other’s “characters”. Digressing from the budget, Mehmood also criticised the government’s performance on other fronts, including raising the plight of Kashmiris. As many as 14 MNAs belonging to the Imran-led PTI, Pakistan Muslim League-Q, Balochistan National Party-M, Pakistan Awami Muslim League did not attend the dinner held on the lawns of PM House on Sunday. But due to the backdoor efforts of Speaker National Assembly Asad Qaiser, the missing 14 MNAs of the ruling party, including Haji Imtiaz and Nawab Karamat, turned up at the PM House after the dinner.