In midnight drama, Parvez Elahi wins trust vote in Pakistan Punjab Assembly

On Wednesday, the LHC held hearing in this case and remarked that the Chief Minister would have to take trust vote.

Updated - January 12, 2023 07:21 pm IST

Published - January 12, 2023 07:56 am IST - Lahore

Pakistan Punjab Chief Minister Chaudhry Parvez Elahi. File

Pakistan Punjab Chief Minister Chaudhry Parvez Elahi. File

In a midnight drama in Pakistan's Punjab Assembly, Chief Minister Chaudhry Parvez Elahi managed to obtain a vote of confidence paving the way for its dissolution on the wish of ousted prime minister Imran Khan.

Punjab Governor Baligur Rehman of the PMLN sought a vote of confidence from CM Elahi last month in a bid to stop the dissolution of the assembly. He had de-notified Elahi and his cabinet for failing to comply with his order. However, the Lahore High Court had restored Elahi and his cabinet.

On Wednesday, the LHC held hearing in this case and remarked that the Chief Minister would have to take trust vote.

In the light of the court's observation, Elahi secured the required 186 votes from the Punjab Assembly in the ongoing session at 1 am Thursday amid the Opposition's protest.

Punjab Assembly Speaker Sibtain Khan presided over the session and said CM Elahi had received 186 votes required to secure the trust vote.

The Opposition led by the Pakistan Muslim League (Nawaz) boycotted the session and announced challenging the trust vote procedure in the court.

Federal Interior Minister Rana Sanaullah claimed that the Punjab Assembly session's proceedings are against the rules and Constitution and the Opposition would challenge them in the LHC. He said CM Elahi secured 181 votes but showed it as 186. "We will prove this fraud in the court," he said.

Mr. Elahi termed securing trust vote a victory of Imran Khan's vision. He asked the Opposition to "accept the defeat gracefully".

Talking to reporters outside the assembly, PTI senior leader Fawad Chaudhry said: "CM Elahi will send advice to the governor for dissolution of the assembly on the direction of Imran Khan. This advice may be sent to the governor today if no hurdle arises because of the court hearing".

Mr. Fawad said Mr. Elahi would withdraw his petition from the high court regarding the governor's order. He said the Khyber Pakhtunkhwa (KP) Assembly, where Imran Khan's Pakistan Tehreek-i-Insaf has the government, will also be dissolved.

Mr. Khan has already said he wants to dissolve both Punjab and KP assemblies to push the PMLN-led federal government to call snap polls. Khan said only fresh polls can steer the country out of economic crisis.

The federal government however insists that general elections will be held after the completion of the tenure of the government in August.

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