PESHAWAR: Congratulating his entire team on the approval of the fifth budget of the Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) provincial government from the provincial assembly, Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Chief Minister Mehmood Khan said that the provincial government has presented a historic budget of over Rs. 13 trillion saying that such a balanced and people-friendly budget has never been presented in the history of the province.
He thanked the opposition members for approving the budget in a cordial atmosphere while maintaining the tradition of the Provincial Assembly in the process of approving the budget. He said that the provincial government welcomes the positive criticism of the opposition regarding the new budget. “I will definitely follow their suggestions,” he added.
He was addressing a budget session in the provincial assembly on Friday. He lamented that out of 75 years of Pakistan’s existence, 40 years were ruled by only two parties but they did nothing to achieve the goals of the establishment of this country
When Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) came to power, the country was on the verge of bankruptcy but prime minister Imran Khan worked day and night to save the country from bankruptcy, put the economy in the right direction but unfortunately robbed our elected government in the dark of night. And our elected government was overthrown and an imported government was imposed on the country.
Mahmood Khan further said that Imran Khan’s government was overthrown because he laid the foundation of an independent and sovereign foreign policy of the country, passed a resolution against Islamophobia, effectively advocated the Kashmir cause, provided shelter and anchorage for the poor. Established, started work on 10 major dams in the country and moved towards the establishment of Islamic welfare state and talked of breaking the shackles of IMF. Imran Khan’s government was overthrown under an external conspiracy but those who came to power under an external conspiracy have neither the ability to run the country nor do they have any policy. They has come to power only to take NRO and end his cases.
The Chief Minister said that the rupee was depreciating sharply against the dollar, petrol, gas and electricity prices were going up, inflation had broken the back of the common man and increased taxes instead of providing relief to the people. The Chief Minister said that the imported Prime Minister is making bizarre statements every day, sometimes he is making statements to sell clothes and give cheap flour to the people. He does not need to sell clothes to provide cheap flour to the people of the province. The imported Prime Minister should know that Khyber Pakhtunkhwa is also a part of Pakistan and the people here are also Pakistanis.
Reacting to the reduction in the funds of the merged districts by the federation, the Chief Minister said that the federal government was reducing the development funds of the merged districts instead of increasing them. The health card is cutting off the funds of the scheme and removing the development projects of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa already included in the PSDP which is a total injustice to the people of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa and the tribal districts but we will not tolerate this injustice. We will raise our voice in every forum to get the rights of the people of the province.
He urged the opposition members to go beyond political affiliation and support the provincial government for the rights of the province. During the new financial year, Rs.200 billion will be spent directly on the people in the form of Insaf Food Card, Farmer Card, Health Card and Weight Subsidy.
The Chief Minister said that in the new budget 63 thousand temporary employees would be made permanent while huge development funds of Rs. 37 billion would be provided to the local governments which would solve the problems of the people at the local level. Referring to the four-year performance of his government, the Chief Minister said that more than three thousand doctors were recruited in the health sector and Rs. 31 billion was spent on free treatment of people under health card. In addition, several mega projects, including the Peshawar Institute of Cardiology, were completed and activated. Similarly, 45,000 teachers were recruited in the education sector while recruitment of 25,000 more teachers and 3,000 school leaders is underway, 76 colleges have been upgraded and 38 new colleges have been set up.
Mahmood Khan said that Swat Motorway Phase I was completed, more than one thousand kilometers of new roads and 38 bridges were constructed in the province while more than two thousand kilometers of roads were restored. Similarly, more than 4.5 million meters of irrigation channels, 35 small dams, 57 check dams and 222 irrigation tube wells were constructed in the irrigation sector. Mentioning the four-year performance of his government in the field of tourism, Mahmood Khan said that the Culture and Tourism Authority was set up for this purpose. Three development authorities were set up. Tourism police have been set up in Swat and Abbottabad while progress is being made on construction of tourism roads and setting up of camping pods and integrated tourism zones.
The Chief Minister said that Khyber Pakhtunkhwa has become the first province to formulate a food security policy. A special program has been launched for the development of livestock in the province. Facilities are being provided. He further said that the provincial government has successfully completed the Billion Tree project while 569 million plants have been planted under the 10 billion tree project which has resulted in a 13% increase in the green cover of the province.
Mahmood Khan said that Khyber Pakhtunkhwa was the first province to extend rescue services to tehsil level. The Chief Minister said that a scheme of Rs. 8 billion has been launched to provide training in IT sector to one lakh youth of the province while training of digital skills has been provided to more than 15 thousand youth. Mehmood Khan further said that BRT project is one of the best public transport scheme on which 2.5 million people travel on daily basis. The Chief Minister said that under Balakot Hydropower Project, Swat Expressway Phase II, Peshawar DI Khan Motorway, Dir Expressway, Chitral Shandor Road, Draban Special Economic Zone, Chashma Right Bank Lift Canal, New Peshawar Valley City, four under Public Private Partnership. Major hospitals are major projects of the provincial government on which work will be started soon. On the occasion, the Chief Minister directed to increase the minimum monthly wage of the workers from Rs. 21,000 to Rs. Keyboard announces abolition of examination fees