KARACHI - The Sindh Assembly on Monday continued debate on provincial budget for the second consecutive day with members from both sides of the house - opposition and treasury - criticising and praising nine month budget 2018-19.

The provincial assembly session once again began late as per the schedule with Speaker Agha Siraj Durrani in the chair. Addressing the budget session lone MMA lawmaker Syed Abdul Rasheed said that there was nothing in the budget that could be praised. “There are new concepts for developing the province in the budget,” he said.

The MMA MPA from Lyari said that he had seen five RO plants projects in the budget book but was unable to see any of them on ground in Lyari area. “I have been searching for these plants since long but was unable to find them,” he said.

Speaking over NFC award, he said that the provincial government should accept offer from PTI lawmaker Khurram Sherzaman for playing a bridge role between federal and Sindh government in ensuring transfer of due amount of the province. “The issue of revisiting NFC award after every five years should also be raised,” he said adding that a major chunk of the NFC [51 percent] goes to Punjab and a mere 24 percent that comes to Sindh was not even devolved to the biggest city of the country-Karachi.

MQM-P lawmaker Javed Hanif- who is facing NAB case and comes to assembly on production orders- said that he had thoroughly read the budget and it had noting for the masses in the Sindh province, He said that the provincial government has no vision of how the province would progress. “This budget has nothing for the industrial sector which contributes a major chunk in the budget,” he said adding that it even did not have any program for the betterment for farmers and labourers of which the PPPP claims of having support in its success.

The MQM-P lawmaker said that most of the budget goes in the salaries and the uplift projects budget is further cut short rather than cutting short lavish expenses of the provincial government. “The new schemes had mere Rs 26 billion which is even less than a peanut,” he said.

He further criticized the government for neglecting the suggestions of opposition parties in budget and said that they also represent more than forty percent of the province.

A stir was witnessed during the budget debate when PPP lawmaker on women reserved seats from Karachi Sadia Javed criticised the opposition parties PTI and MQM-P for unnecessary criticism. “Those who are criticising us in Sindh are criticised internationally for taking six U-turns in brief period of five-week government tenure,” she said while referring to PTI led federal government.

Further lambasting the PTI Lawmaker Dr Imran Ali Shah who narrated a story of deteriorating health facilities in Thar, the PPP lawmaker said Shah narrated the story of child health yesterday but is now avoiding the phone of the parents of that girl who are in Karachi for treatment in a hospital. She further said that those who are raising hue and cry over infrastructure and garbage in Karachi were sometimes back ruled the city. “Since they had now lost the mandate in the same fashion they once deprive others, they are still trying to come out from that trauma and are criticizing PPPP as it has now taken responsibility to serve the city,” she said.

Minister for Mines and Minerals Shabbir Bijrani termed the budget as per the wishes of the masses and said that the province was short of fulfilling its targets due to lack of promised funding from the federal government. “We have improved health services in the province and are working further to improve other sectors of the province,” he said.