GILGIT: On Thursday the Gilgit-Baltistan government amid opposition protest unveiled over Rs 63 billion budget in regional assembly for the fiscal year 2018-19. The major portion of the budget is allocated for the non-developmental expenses.
This budget was presented by the finance Minister Akbar Taban in the assembly session chaired by Deputy Speaker Jaffarullah Khan.It is noted here that Rs 28.026 billions have been allocated for non-developmental expenses in the budget. In budget papers Rs 18 billion have been earmarked for development expenditure and Rs seven billion for food subsidies. Moreover, Rs. eight billion have been allocated for the PSDP projects.
The members of the opposition protested against the budget including Leader of Opposition Mohammad Shafi, PPP member Javed Hussain, PTI member Raja Jahanzeb and BNF’s Nawaz Khan Naji. They recorded their protest by chanting slogan against the Government and tearing up the copies of the budget.
Finance Minister Taban carried on his budget speech amid the opposition protest, which continued till the end of the speech making it difficult for the members of the house to understand.While addressing the media finance Minister Taban said that the annual budget has increased as compared to the budget of the previous years.In view of the ruling PML-N enjoying a two-thirds majority in the assembly, the budget is likely to be approved till Sunday.
The Finance Minister criticized the opposition members behavior and lack of respect and courtesy and said it was unethical for them to cause disruption before even letting him to complete his speech.The minister said that funds have been allocated for communication, health, education and tourism projects in the region.
Speaking on the occasion, the advisor to chief minister Shams Mir, said that the region has witnessed rapid development during the last three years.Mir said that the Pakistan Muslim League- Nawaz (PML-N) government started with Rs nine billion budget in 2015 and has substantially increased it to Rs 63 billion.“We have achieved 200 percent targets of development in the region,” he claimed