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Consequent upon the advice of the Chief Minister, Punjab to the Governor of the Punjab under clause (1) of Article 112 of the Constitution of the Islamic Republic of Pakistan, Provincial Assembly of the Punjab stands dissolved on 14 January 2023 at 2210 hours at the expiration of forty-eight hours after the Chief Minister has so advised.
In order to run the business of the Government, the Governor of the Punjab, in terms of the provisions of the Article 139 (as adapted in 1973), made the "Punjab Government Rules of Business, 1974". In these rules, Provincial Assembly of the Punjab was given the status of attached department of Law Department at Sr.No.18 (iii).
However, in recognition of its constitutional status in terms of Article 87, read with Article 127 of the Constitution, the Provincial Assembly of the Punjab was acknowledged as an independent Secretariat when through an amendment in the Rules of Business 1974 vide Notification No. CAB-III-2-48/85 dated 23rd October 1986, the entry related to Provincial Assembly of the Punjab was omitted from the Rules of Business 1974. It is now no longer an attached department of Law Department.
The Provincial Assembly of the Punjab Secretariat enjoys a unique and special status. Article 87 of the Constitution, read with Article 127, envisages that the Provincial Assembly shall have a separate Secretariat.
The status of Assembly Secretariat being a constitutional body and its employees as civil servants has been acknowledged by the Superior Courts. In a recent judgment dated 5th August 2010 in CA 1513/96, the Hon’ble Supreme Court of Pakistan has held:
“Article 87 read with Article 127 of the Constitution expressly enables the Parliament and the Provincial Assemblies, as the case may be, to make laws for regulation of the terms and conditions of service of the employees of the respective establishments. The employees of such bodies are, therefore, civil servants.”
Article 87, read with Article 127, provides that the Speaker with approval of the Governor may make rules regulating the recruitment, and the conditions of service of persons appointed to the Assembly Secretariat. In exercise of the same powers, the following rules were made to govern the service matters of the employees of the Assembly Secretariat:
The Provincial Assembly of the Punjab Secretariat (Recruitment and Conditions of Service) Rules, 1986.
So far as the financial discipline of the Assembly is concerned, the Constitution again gives a special status to the Assembly Secretariat. Article 88, read with Article 127, provides that the expenditure of the Assembly shall be controlled by the Assembly acting on the advice of its Finance Committee (comprising Speaker, Minister for Finance and such other Members as may be elected there to by the Provincial Assembly of the Punjab). The business of the Finance Committee is governed by the Provincial Assembly of the Punjab Finance Committee Rules 1974 made by the Finance Committee in exercise of the powers conferred by clause (3) of Article 88 read with Article 127 of the Constitution.
A Provincial Assembly shall, unless sooner dissolved, continue for term of five years from the day of its first meeting and shall stand dissolved at the expiration of its term.