ISLAMABAD - With two days to end the fiscal year, the government has released only Rs752.14 billion so far under its Public Sector Development Programme (PSDP) 2017-18 out of total allocations of Rs1,001 billion, which is 25 percent less than the total budget. The drastic cut in development budget of various schemes and projects was made in a bid to cover the growing budget deficit.

According to sources in Planning Commission, federal ministries could get a small share of only Rs186.35 billion out of Rs302 billion set aside by the government for the year. Whereas for special areas an amount of Rs 66.14 billion was released out of Rs 71 billion.

However, the Pakistan Muslim League-N government had already released 100 percent budget of Rs30 billion for Prime Minister's Global SDGS Achievement Programme. During previous fiscal year the government released around 93 percent of the total allocated development budget of Rs 740 billion out of total Rs 800 billion under PSDP 2016-17.

Out of allocation under PSDP 2017-18, the government released Rs 13.7 billion for Prime Minister's Youth Hunarmand Programme out of its total allocations of Rs20 billion.

It may be mentioned here that major chunk of the released funds was made during the PML-N government before May 31.

Meanwhile, the government has released Rs 302.19 billion for National Highway Authority for which Rs 324.72 billion have been allocated for the year 2017-18, whereas for Wapda (Power), an amount of Rs 43.4 billion has been released out of total allocation of Rs 60.9 billion.

Similarly, Rs 8.65 billion have been released for Communication Division (other than National Highway Authority) for which the government has earmarked Rs 13.66 billion under PSDP 2017-18.

Railways Division received Rs 19.384 billion out of its total allocation of Rs 42.9 billion whereas Aviation Division received Rs 3.4 billion out of its total allocation of Rs 4.348 billion.

The government also released an amount of Rs 26.32 billion for various development projects of Higher Education Commission out of total allocation of Rs 35.662 billion, while Rs 12.6 billion have been released for Atomic Energy Commission.

Water and Power Division (water sector) received Rs 33.96 billion out of its total allocation of Rs 36.75 billion under PSDP 2017-18.

The government also released Rs 18.75 billion for National Health Services, Regulations and Coordination Division, for which an amount of Rs48.701 billion have been allocated in the federal PSDP 2017-18 while Rs286.53 million have been released for Pakistan Nuclear Regulatory Authority out of its total allocations of Rs 321.53 million.

An amount of Rs16.6 billion have been released for Finance Division out of its total allocations of Rs20.9 billion while Rs 782.5 million have been released for Climate Change Division out of its total allocations of Rs 815 million for the current year.

Similarly, an amount of Rs464.4 million have been released for Petroleum and Natural Resource Division out of its allocations of Rs554.291 billion, Rs2.1 billion for Planning, Development and Reform Division out of its allocations of Rs8.556 billion whereas Rs3.5 billion have been released for Suparco, out of its allocations of Rs3.5 billion.

Likewise, the government also released Rs7.8 billion for Housing and Works division while Rs91.5 million for Human Rights Division, and Rs1.05 billion for National Food Security and Research Division.

The government has also released Rs24.6 billion for AJK (block and other projects) out of its allocations of Rs25.844. billion, Rs15.5 billion for Gilgit Baltistan (block and other projects) out of its allocations of Rs 18.3 billion whereas Rs 26.03 billion have been released for Safron/FATA (Block and other projects) out of its total allocations of Rs 26.90 billion for the FY2018.