ISLAMABAD: The National Assembly on Friday offered Fateha for the departed soul of the Muttahida Qaumi Movement MNA Tahira Asif who was killed in a firing incident in Lahore.
As proceedings of the House started, Speaker Sardar Ayaz Sadiq informed the House that the female MNA had succumbed to the injuries. He said as per parliamentary tradition, the proceeding of the House is adjourned over the death of a sitting parliamentarian, allowing the members to express their emotions on the incident.
On directives of the Speaker, Minister of State for Religious Affairs and Interfaith Harmony Pir Aminul Hasnaat led Fateha prayer for forgiveness of the departed soul.
Sheikh Salahuddin of the MQM described the incident as saddening and told the House that Tahira Asif had gone to Lahore to condole death of Minhajul Quran workers.
He said the late MNA had fought for truth and that the MQM would observe three-day mourning and called for arrest of killers of the female MNA within three days.
Leader of the Opposition Syed Khurshid Shah said he had been associated with her since 2002 and prayed for peace to the departed soul. He also called for arrest of her killers.
Shah Mehmood Qureshi also condoled with Tahira Asif’s family as well as the MQM’s leadership and asked the Punjab government to arrest and punish the killers to avert the recurrence of such events in future. Sheikh Rasheed Ahmed said Tahira Asif’s murder was unfortunate and a national tragedy.
He said target killing of women had brought defame and the House should adopt a resolution to condemn the incident.
Mehmood Khan Achakzai said the government should look into the factors behind such incidents and said tribal people avoid duels in presence of the women, despite old enmities.
He said the country had been facing insecurity since Afghan war and the government would have to take decisive steps to avoid further losses.
He requested the Prime Minister, religious scholars and political leadership to join heads to work out the solution.
He said if Tahirul Qadri had objection over the commission to probe into Lahore killings, he should request the Prime Minister to form another one comprising the judges of the Supreme Court. Sahibzada Tariqullah also condemned the incident and condoled with the victim family. He also criticized the blockade of roads leading to the Parliament House.
Federal Minister for Defense Production Rana Tanvir Hussain said the government and Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz were shocked and grieved over the incident and condemned it.
He said every parliamentarian was serving the national interests and assured the House that Punjab government would leave no stone unturned to arrest the killers.
Later, the House was adjourned to meet again on Saturday at 0930 hours.