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Khawaja Asif's disparaging comments infuriate PTI's women lawmakers

Khawaja Asif's disparaging comments infuriate PTI's women lawmakers


Khawaja Asif referred female senators as ‘garbage’ and ‘remains’ of PTI chief.

ISLAMABAD (Dunya News) - Defence Minister Khawaja Asif’s sexist and derogatory remarks against the women senators of Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) during his address in a joint session of parliament on Tuesday infuriated PTI’s women lawmakers who severely criticised him for disparaging comments, Dunya News reported. 

During his address, Asif referred to women senators as ‘garbage’ and ‘remains’ of the PTI chief. His comments drew a strong reaction from the PTI women parliamentarians who stood up from their seats and demanded that Asif take his words back. 

Asif made the remarks in response to criticism by opposition parliamentarians, including PTI Senator Ali Zafar, over the handling of legislation and bills.

Asif made a reference to the PTI chief, recalling the bulldozing of legislation and the dissolution of the National Assembly during his tenure. He then made disparaging comments that soon caused chaos in the House.

"These are the remnants of an individual who termed the Chief of (Army) Staff his father. Mr Speaker, these are his ruins. This is the trash he left behind. This is his garbage which has to be cleaned," he continued after women members of the opposition shouted in severe criticism over Asif’s rant.

Defence Minister Khawaja Asif said the PTI chief was hiding behind his workers and women to avoid facing law.

He said parliament had been cleansed of PTI while mentioning that it should take a deep dive into its tenure that ruined political and economic institutions.

Khawaja Asif stressed that the PTI chief was a coward as he was defended by the women and workers to avoid facing the law and constitution.

Responding to remarks, PTI Senator Zarqa Suharwardy Taimur said only one’s moral character and conduct differentiated people. "I was worried over the language being used by such senior political figures, I’ve never heard such words in my house."

She said it was "sad" that fellow MNA had used words such as "garbage" and "barking". "We don’t respect someone else when we don’t consider our own self to be respectable," she added.

At this point, Law Minister Azam Nazir Tarar formally requested the Speaker to expunge these words from the proceedings citing that they were uttered in a wave of emotion. In response to this, PTI Senator Ali Zafar retorted by criticising the current assembly members, equating them with a flock of sheep. This remark was also subsequently removed from the proceedings.