ISLAMABAD           -        Pakistan People’s Party leader Senator Rehman Malik wrote a letter to Senator Farooq H. Naek, Chairman Senate Standing Committee on Finance to include his suggestions in recommendations by Senate regarding budget. 

In the letter, Senator Malik wrote that in addition to his speech in the Senate House on budget, he was giving some subsequent suggestions for inclusion in the recommendations to be made by the Senate House to the National Assembly for the Budget for Financial year 2020-21.

Rehman Malik suggested that salaries of the government servants should be increased by 20 percent.“Government must announce a special package for the private/daily wages employees for enhancement of their salaries by their employers,” he added.

The PPP leader said the government should allocate special funds for self-employment business opportunities enabling those who have lost their jobs due to COVID-19, to get start their own small business.

He said the government must allocate at least Rs 100 billion for construction of temporary hospitals for treatment of COVID-19 patients and for purchase of medical equipment, protective kits for doctors, paramedical staff, army, rangers, police and other law enforcement agencies who are giving duty on the front line during COVID-19.

“The salaries of the medical and Para-medical staff should be enhanced up to 75 percent,” he added.

He said the government has allocated only Rs 50 billion under Corona Stimulus Package for fertilizer subsidy, loan remissions and other relief to the farmers, which may be enhanced to Rs 100 billion.“A Special Tax Relief Package should be given for agriculture i.e. wheat crops and livestock, dairy farming etc. to provide relief to small farmers,” Malik said.

The PPP leader said the government should allocate more funds for management of rain water reservoirs. “Special funds should also be allocated for the construction of new small/mini dams,” he wrote.

The government should enhance the budgetary allocation for “online education development programme through IT/Internet access, especially in remote areas.”

He said the budgetary allocation of Higher Education Commission should also be enhanced to Rs.100 billion.

Senator Malik said the government should allocate funds for improvement in the Aviation Sector and to upgrade Airports all over the country.

Senator Rehman Malik said that the current budget is nothing but playing with the statistical figures just to complete the usual budget formalities. He added that the government has no vision to steer the country out of Covid-19 crisis, which are going to increase by many folds. 

He said the budget is also failing to identify as to which segment of the society it is directed for and the public at large thinks that neither it is serving the business class nor the daily wager. He said the government has clearly failed to demonstrate a sense of leadership when the country is facing problems on every front, whether it is the Covid-19 crisis, locust invasion or high inflation.

In a separate statement, Rehman Malik urged the people to stay at homes and follow the SOPs strictly as June, July and August are more crucial regarding Corona virus. 

In series of tweets, Senator A. Rehman Malik said “Dear All Pakistani brothers and sisters please for God sake follow anti-COVID-19 SOPs as according to estimate of Imperial College London that has endorsed my fears that the number of death due to Corona virus will be almost 80 thousand and death toll may rise to 2.5 million.

He said that he was not scaring people but telling the correct findings as the estimated figures given to UK and US by this college had already come true, therefore all should strictly follow the SOPs. 

In another tweet, Senator Malik said, “Hubble  Health Warning for June, July and August is worrying as COVID-19 has become highly active in Pakistan as in August, it can kill many thousands per day. Please stay in your homes, please take it seriously.” 

In a followed tweet, he said “As Chairman Senate Standing Committee on Interior, I advised the government for lock down through army in mid-March. Last week, I appealed to Prime Minister and Chief Ministers for enforcement of SOPs through Army but in vain.

Now provinces are doing limited lockdown in panic as rulers are confused and they have put the people on risk.” He said that the leadership being the protectors of the masses are fighting on petty matters and not realising the gravity of the issue (Corona virus) whereas my persistent requests for the lockdown remained unheard.  He added that now it is too late as even the lockdown will not be effective.