ISLAMABAD, Sep 16 (APP):The historic transformation of important state owned buildings into public friendly educational institutions, parks and museums will serve as catalyst for regaining the lost confidence of the masses over government, serve for austerity cause, generate revenues and ultimately bridge the gap between masses and those who are leading them.
The decision of converting state buildings like Prime Minister House in federal capital, Governor Houses at provincial levels and other buildings into universities, parks, museums and tourists spots will facilitate a common man who has never imagined accessing those buildings which symbolized a luxurious life and power.
It is a visionary step taken by the Prime Minister, Imran Khan and there is nothing parochial to believe that how foreign delegations and heads of states would be accommodated in absence of PM house”, Leader of the House, Senator Syed Shibli Faraz said.
In an interview with APP, he said, “The foreign delegates mostly reside in their respective embassies or private hotels and our government would replicate the same, he added. “We have also been part of various delegations on foreign visits but never took reside in the Prime Minister House or state dwelling of that country”.
“It is quite ironic to see that a country with increasing poverty, inflation and economic crisis welcomes foreign countries’ heads in a lavish and ultra-sumptuous palace like an oil producing country”, he regretted.
This PM house does not depicts the true Islamic Republic of Pakistan rather the typical elite mind who neglect pressing economic crisis and rests in the fantasy of its glory, Shibli Faraz said.
Senator Khushbakht Shujaat of Mutahidda Qaumi Movement (MQM) said there are no such majestic residencies around the globe like our prime minister house.
The head of states from foreign countries would laugh on us as we approach them for aid and funds being a poor and economically weak country, however, our state residencies show a quite different scenario, she said.
She claimed that the initiative of the sitting government was their ardent desire from the day one. The Prime Minister along with his cabinet are committed for this cause which means that they have a long term plan and well-thought strategy for the purpose, she added.
“It is not a matter of emotional announcement rather the future of our youth which demands and needs long-term plans for a sustainable and prosperous future”, she said.
She said if there is any legal impediment halting the conversion of PM house into a university then legislation could be done to develop separate places for foreign delegates, dignitaries and heads of state. “That places should be built in a way that these depict the true image of an Islamic state in line with its financial position”, she added.
Meanwhile, Senator Azam Khan Swati said one has to voluntarily set a precedent of sacrifice for national cause and PM Khan’s initiative is one of those brave steps. “It is a message for every countryman that if you want to serve the country then you must sacrifice”, he added.
He claimed that when the Prime Minister and his cabinet ministers would not avail protocol then it would help restore the sanctity of the parliament and public’s faith in democracy.
Kingdom style way of governance on poor tax payer’s money would never have public faith and esteem as a benign democracy.
He said the task forces have taken this decision in the light of deep insight into the prevailing economic condition and the burden added to it by these lavish state residencies.
He believed that all developed countries in the world have taken such austerity measures and there is nothing new or contradicting to democratic norms. “Our sober and simple conduct and sense of responsibility would help not only to strengthen democracy’s roots in our society but also encourage people to pay tax and contribute maximum to national development”, he added.
Senator Samina Saeed (PTI) said all these state residencies are run by tax payer’s money and there conversion into educational institutions would ultimately benefit our children. Every one of us should support this stance, keeping aside all of our differences, she added.