LAHORE - PPP’s central Punjab President, Mian Manzoor Wattoo on Sunday said that 10 per cent increase in salaries of government employees as announced by the Finance Minister was not enough to cope with the inflationary effect.

“There should be at least 20 per cent increase in the salaries of government servants and pensioners because they have been badly hit by the unprecedented food inflation”, he said in a statement.

The PPP leader said that due to the withdrawal of subsidies under IMF tutelage the spiral increase in overall prices had been phenomenal not withstanding the inflation on food items.

He maintained that the prices of the food items had risen to four times if compared to the period when PPP was in power.  Wattoo recalled that PPP government had increased the government employees salaries to the extent of 150 per cent during the five years with a view to improving their quality of life.

The PPP government, he added, was known among government employees for giving substantial increase in their salaries and their assessment is not misplaced when judged from the track record.

He observed that the present government’s policies had been anti-poor and heavily pro-capitalists.

The government is treading on the trajectory of squeezing the poor dry adding its largesse towards the crony capitalism had been stuffing their deep pockets at the expense of the poorest of the poor, he said.

He referred to the recent doling out of more than 300 billion of rupees to the capitalists in the shape of exemptions in taxes and Custom duties.

The amount should have been collected by the government to provide relief to the down trodden, he stated.