LAHORE: The Punjab government has increased budget for the chief minister and governor secretariats by 22pc and 9.5pc, respectively.
For 2016-17 budget estimates, the provincial government has allocated Rs423.8 million for the CM Secretariat. In 2015-16, the budget estimate for the purpose was Rs344m. The Shahbaz administration revised this budget and allocated another Rs228m to meet the expenditures of CM secretariat.
Going by the revised budget of 2015-16, it is likely the government may increase budget for CM secretariat for 2016-17 also.
The opposition had criticised the Punjab government for allocating an additional Rs228m for the secretariat without any justification, demanding it cut the budget as the chief minister often claimed adopting austerity measures.
“The CM has formed an austerity committee. Is it only for others?” asked Opposition Leader in the Punjab Assembly Mian Mahmoodur Rasheed.
Talking to Dawn, he said the chief minister should adopt austerity according to his preaching and cut the huge budget for his secretariat.
PTI Chairman Imran Khan also alleged that Shahbaz had set up six CM offices in Lahore, thus spending lavishly on them.
The Governor’s Secretariat got Rs264.7m for 2016-17 as compared to Rs241.8m last year. Unlike the chief minister secretariat, the governor’s got only about Rs2m extra in the revised 2015-16 budget.
Published in Dawn, June 14th, 2016