MPs ex­press mixed re­ac­tion in bud­get de­bate

Pakistan Observer - - NATIONAL -

ISLAMABAD—The law­mak­ers from both the trea­sury and op­po­si­tion benches re­mained di­vided in their re­marks and opin­ions while par­tic­i­pat­ing in the bud­get 2016-17 de­bate that re­sumed in the Na­tional As­sem­bly on Thurs­day. Par­tic­i­pat­ing in the bud­get dis­cus­sions, Faqir Sher Muhamamd Bi­lalani of Pak­istan Peo­ple’s Party urged the gov­ern­ment to hold pop­u­la­tion cen­sus which has been pend­ing long since 1998.

He said that the bud­get for the year 2016-17 could not be de­scribed as pro-poor. He crit­i­cized the gov­ern­ment for fail­ing to an­nounce the Na­tional Fi­nance Award. He de­manded of the gov­ern­ment to check the fake and sub­stan­dard pes­ti­cides that are avail­able in the mar­ket to save the farm­ers from huge losses. He also urged the gov­ern­ment to en­sure sta­bil­ity in the prices of cot­ton to re­store con­fi­dence of farm­ers so that they may be en­cour­aged to pro­duce more crop.

Tak­ing part in the bud­get de­bate, MNA Maryam Au­rangzeb said that the cur­rent gov­ern­ment has taken many mea­sures, which the pre­vi­ous gov­ern­ments failed to take, to lead the coun­try to­wards progress and devel­op­ment. She said that it was the gov­ern­ment of PML(N) wherin Na­tional Ac­tion Plan was for­mu­lated to rid the coun­try of the men­ace of ter­ror­ism.

She said that the gov­ern­ment es­tab­lished Na­tional Counter Ter­ror­ism Au­thor­ity (NACTA) and al­lo­cated Rs 1.87 bil­lion for es­tab­lish­ment of joint in­ves­ti­ga­tion di­rec­torate with an aim to curb ter­ror­ism with co­or­di­nated ef­forts. She said that the in­ci­dence of ter­ror­ism have con­sid­er­ably re­duced from 1680 to 296, show­ing 74% de­crease, which she said has be­come pos­si­ble due to the poli­cies of the gov­ern­ment.

She said the gov­ern­ment has been work­ing hard to im­prove the hu­man in­dex and it has ear­marked Rs 20 bil­lion for Sus­tain­able Devel­op­ment Goals, de­spite the fact that 98 per­cent of th­ese goals are re­lated to provinces. She said that Rs 100 bil­lion would be spent for re­ha­bil­i­ta­tion of In­ter­nally Dis­placed Per­sons (IDPs).

She was of the view that the China Pak­istan Eco­nomic Cor­ri­dor would pass through the road net­work, de­vel­oped dur­ing the last ten­ure of PML(N) gov­ern­ment, and added this shows far­sight­ed­ness of Prime Min­is­ter Nawaz Sharif. On the oc­ca­sion, Haji Ghu­lam Ahmed Balour of Awami Na­tional Party (ANP) said that the bud­get was not for poor, rather it was for land­lords.

He said that the provinces should be given their due rights and lamented that some peo­ple are still in de­nial mood as far as 18th Amend­ment of the Con­sti­tu­tion is con­cerned. He was of the view that ter­ror­ism was the out­come of un­demo­cratic gov­er­ments of the past and main­tained that the coun­try could not af­ford more such regimes.

Par­tic­i­pat­ing in the de­bate, Pir Bux Junejo of PML(F) urged the gov­ern­ment to pay spe­cial heed to­wards agri­cul­ture. He said that since agri­cul­ture is con­sid­ered back­bone of coun­try’s econ­omy so if this sec­tor is de­vel­oped, it would re­sult in over­all devel­op­ment of the coun­try.—APP

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