|Budget 2012-13: Nawaz decries jugglery of figures|
04 June 2012
The head of Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz heaped scorn on the government on Sunday for resorting to a “jugglery of figures” in the budget for the new financial year. He tempered his criticism though with a small dose of hope, insisting that the damage was not altogether irreparable and could be undone through “sincere and meticulous management”.
Nawaz, whose party led a noisy protest in the National Assembly during the budget speech, was speaking at a post-budget seminar titled ‘Pakistan’s Economy from Present Crisis to Growth and Prosperity’ convened to highlight what PML-N economic analysts term “loopholes in the budget depicting the government’s insincerity and inefficiency.”
He maintained that rampant corruption and misuse of power left very little in the way of spending on public welfare. “It is a wholesale failure on all fronts.”
One particular point of contention is the ruling party’s call for allocating resources to give protocol and privileges to former presidents and prime minister who have held offices for a minimum of two years. “It was unnecessary. I don’t need it myself and will not take advantage of this facility,” said the former premier.
Recalling achievements during his tenure, Nawaz claimed that the PML-N made informed decisions when it was in power and will continue to do so in the future also. He claimed that even India had admired his party’s fiscal policies.
Nawaz said the ruling party’s budget has brought the country on the “brink of an economic meltdown and social anarchy and carries no incentive for the downtrodden masses.”
“The regime lacks basic knowledge required to govern a country and has spent its tenure visiting foreign countries on taxpayers’ money.”
In what was a clear reference to PTI chief Imran Khan, Nawaz said some people taunted the PML-N saying the party had already been tested in the past. “Yes, we were tested and we proved ourselves by effective governance.”
Castigating the present rulers over the prevalent energy crisis, Nawaz said: “They just give deadlines, but never take practical steps to address it.”
He claims that had his regime not been overturned by a military coup, the country would not have been facing the energy shortfall it currently is.
Earlier, leader of the opposition Senator Ishaq Dar noted that load shedding can be eliminated within a year by exercising financial discipline.
He predicted that resolution of the circular debt issue could lead to the generation of an additional 2,000 megawatts of electricity.
Dar also pointed out that with the proposed resource allocation for electricity generation, the government will only be able to generate 500 megawatts of electricity against the 8,000 megawatt shortfall it faces.
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