Punjab cabinet okays Rs2.6tr budget
Gives nod to 10% increase in salaries and pensions
The Punjab cabinet has approved the provincial budget for the fiscal year 2021/22 with a total outlay of Rs2,600 billion, reported 24NewsHD Tv channel.
The Punjab cabinet has okayed the annual financial plan for the province while giving a nod to a 10% increase in the salaries and pensions of the working and retired employees.
Chief Minister Usman Buzdar presided over the cabinet meeting on Monday. The cabinet approved the provincial budget proposals with consensus.
The meeting also okayed the reviewed estimations of fiscal budget 2020/21, and fiscal bill 2021 was also approved.
The cabinet meeting presented an increase in the agricultural tax proposed by the Board of Revenue which was rejected by both Chief Minister Buzdar and his cabinet.
Buzdar said we could not put an extra burden on farmers. He said farmers were feeling happy in the stint of the PTI government. He vowed to make grower happier and more prosperous.
The provincial cabinet also granted a raise in the minimum wage of workers. The minimum income has been raised from Rs17,500 to Rs20,000.
Buzdar congratulated his economic team; Punjab Finance Minister Hashim Jawan Bakht, adviser Dr Salman Shah, chief secretary, chairman planning and development, secretary treasury and officials of other departments on presenting an excellent budget.
Buzdar said that this was for the very first time that the development budget of every district was being presented separately. The budget proposes relief measures for a common man, he added.
He said realistic targets had been fixed in the budget. He said the budget was not wizardry of statistics. He criticized the incompetent opposition saying ‘only maladroit and inept opposition makes a noise.’ He said it did not behove the opposition to criticize the good works of the government, dubbing it criticism for the sake of criticism. He said the opposition also clamoured during the coronavirus pandemic.
Buzdar said that he would be in constant contact with the assembly members during the budget session.
The meeting also endorsed the decisions taken in the 57th and 58th sessions of the cabinet standing committee for finance and development.
It also authorized the decisions taken in the 60th, 61st and 62nd sessions of the cabinet standing committee for legal affairs.
The cabinet was briefed by the treasury secretary regarding the salient features of the provincial budget, and chairman P&D apprised the meeting of the features of the development programme.
The meeting was attended by provincial ministers, advisers, special advisers, chief secretary Punjab and secretaries of the concerned departments.
Reporter Qazzafi Butt