The government is speaking of increase in minimum wage, but this increase is not rational or based on reality. It is nothing but a feel-good and look-good strategy. Today rupee has less buying power than in the previous decades. More than 50% population of Pakistan is living below the poverty line. The authorities, meaning the policy-makers, I am sure are educated people and should have done a survey of rents, prices of staples and power charges (if they ever paid any).

The increase in minimum wage is again unrealistic, forcing the masses to turn to crime or taking graft or looking for illegal ways to earn more. Let’s presume that 42% of the salary goes to rent, 22% goes to utilities, and 13% goes to transport and medicine, if 30% is spent on children’s education, then how will one purchase groceries? The old laws of minimum wage need amendment according to inflation, and much needs to be done to improve the lives of the poor in Pakistan.

When it comes to increasing the salaries of the MNAs and MPAs, they give themselves a hundred percent boost, while giving minimum to the poor. They need to open their eyes or they may have a ‘Revolution’. These rich politicians and government officials don’t need the perks and allowances they take. With ever-increasing inflation and unemployment, it is important for the government to come up with measures to ease the suffering of the poor. The government should also ease the burden by lowering taxes on basic commodities.

NAUKHAIZ CHAUDHRY,

Lahore, June 16.