ISLAMABAD June 8 (APP): The treasury benches in the National Assembly Wednesday appreciated economic policies of the government while the opposition termed the federal budget as traditional and “mere jugglery of words.”
The legislators stressed on widening of tax net and resolving the energy crisis on priority basis as it was imperative for achieving rapid economic growth.
Resuming the budget debate, Ghulam Sarwar Khan of Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI)said revenue collection during the financial year 2015-16 was below the target while government expenditures crossed the limits.
He alleged that country’s Rs 700 billion have been stashed in foreign properties while over $200 billion of the corrupt elements were hidden in tax havens, but government doing nothing to retrieve the looted money.
The huge difference of load shedding in urban and rural areas is discriminatory and contrary to provisions of the constitution which guarantees equal rights to rural and urban areas.
Muhammad Pervaiz Malik of Pakistan Muslim League Nawaz (PML-N) appreciated government’s economic policies and appreciated finance ministry for taking business community on board before finalizing the budget.
He said the interest rate for industries should be decreased further. He demanded withdrawal on tax imposed on stationery items and shifting focus on industrialization.
Nawab Muhammad Yousaf Talpur of Pakistan Peoples Party demanded conducting census and announcing National Finance Commission (NFC) award.
He demanded tax exemptions on agriculture products instead of giving subsidies.
Several incentives should be given to farmers for enhancing their production.
Chaudhry Jaffer Iqbal of Pakistan Muslim League Nawaz (PML-N) critcised the PTI legislators for not proposing the solid suggestions to improve the federal budget.
He said 2000 mw power generation units were being shifted to LNG for producing cheap electricity. While 3600 mw power would be added in the system by June next.
He said PML-N government was taking practical measures to check corruption from the country.
He said meat, milk processing units should be established at village level for providing employment opportunities and making the villagers self sufficient.
Parliamentary leader of Fata legislators Alhaj Shah G Gul Afridi appreciated Benazir Income Support Programme (BISP) and government’s Kissan Package saying 25 percent of the package should be utilized for constructing cold storages in rural areas.
He said the government should have announced a youth package in the federal budget.
He lamented that Fata has not been given a single project in the Public Sector Development Programme (PSDP). Local representatives should be taken on board in rehabilitation process of Internally Displaced Persons (IDPs).
Pakistan Tehreek e Insaf (PTI)’s Lawmaker, Shafqat Mehmood pointed out the auditor general’s report presented to Public Accounts Committee (PAC) had revealed embezzlement of Rs 190 billon in payment process of circular debt.
He said fake figures were presented in economic survey report, adding the economic experts had rejected the economic growth, which had been claimed in economic survey.
Shafqat said the external and domestic loans were increased significantly in last three years.
He said the economic survey had revealed low generation of electricity in last three years.
A big share of the budget was undocumented, he claimed.
Member National Assembly (MNA), Tahira Aurengzaib said the international institutions were acknowledging the economic development in Pakistan.
The social media was not a forum to resolve the problems of people, she said, and added that practical steps needed for this goal.
She said educational ratio was decreased in KPK as compared to other provinces.
The government had presented a good budget with special relief to agriculture, textile, dairy and poultry industry to ease the lives of downtrodden segments of the society, she added.
The MNA said the people of NA-56 had elected Imran Khan to resolve their issues, adding that the PTI leader had failed to represent his constituency and addressing its issues.
Shahida Rehmani of PPP termed the recent increased in salaries of government employees very less as compared to the price hike.
She said the government should have introduced policies for youth and
empowerment of women of the country.
Three provinces were neglected in PSDP projects, she said.
The MNA said Karachi was the biggest city of the country and there was a need to initiate projects like drinking water, transport and circular railway system.
Engineer Hamdul Haq urged to ensure equal distribution of resources amongst the provinces.
Only the government was able to address the challenges being faced by the people, he said.
MNA of Pakistan Muslim League Nawaz (PML-N), Captain ® Mohammad Safdar said KPK government had now started to follow the policies of PML-N.
He said first time the month of Ramzan was started across the country on same day.
He said the Prime Minister was seeing all affairs of the country.