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Buzdar-led Punjab govt presents ‘development-oriented’ third budget, imposes no new tax

Lahore: The Punjab government Monday presented its third budget for the fiscal year 2021-22 with an estimated outlay of Rs2.653 trillion, an 18 per cent increase and record development allocations.

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Buzdar-led Punjab govt presents ‘development-oriented’ third budget, imposes no new tax
Buzdar-led Punjab govt presents ‘development-oriented’ third budget, imposes no new tax

Provincial Finance Minister Makhdoom Hashim Jawan Bakht, who is presenting the budget in the provincial assembly amid slogans and uproar from opposition benches, claimed the government has earmarked record development budget of Rs560 billion with 66 percent increase.

Earlier, the Punjab cabinet approved the budget 2021-22, revised estimates of outgoing fiscal year and the Punjab Finance Bill 2021-22 with Chief Minister Sardar Usman Buzdar in the chair.

Addressing the assembly members, Speaker Punjab Assembly Chauhdry Pervez Elahi said the new building of the Punjab Assembly has been completed after 16 years’ journey, adding “I warmly welcome all members in the new facility.”

“Without the cooperation of Chief Minister Sardar Usman Buzdar, the PA would haven’t abled to complete this key project,” he said, adding “I had dreamed of ‘today’ when the budget session is taking place in the new building.

Opening his speech during the budget session chaired by Speaker Pervez Elahi, the provincial finance minister said the PTI government has adopted the way of economic progress.

He said in addition to mega development spendings,  a separate annual development plan of Rs189 billion has been reserved for south Punjab. 

He said Rs359 billion in provincial revenues would be collected with 47 per cent growth in FY21 as compared to the collections in the outgoing fiscal year of 2019-20.

The Punjab Revenue Authority (PRA) has collected 42 per cent more revenue as compared to collection of previous fiscal year of 2019-20, he said, adding the collection is the highest as compared to other provinces.  

The provincial government will receive Rs684 billion from the federal divisible pools. The provincial revenue collection target has been set at Rs405 billion that is 28 per cent more than the annual target of outgoing year.

The government has estimated Rs1,428 billion for ongoing provincial expenditures.

Bakhat said an amount of Rs442 billion has been allocated for education and social sector, adding Rs369 billion have been allocated for health sector, with 30 per cent spending compared with the allocations of the outgoing fiscal year. "The government is allocating Rs80 billion under health insurance for citizens of Punjab."

Regarding investment in education sector, the minister said 25 per cent of schools in Punjab are being upgraded while seven new universities are being set up in the province next year. "In addition, 40,000 students will receive vocational training."

An amount of Rs145 billion has been reserved for infrastructure and Rs23 billion have been kept for services sector, the minister said, adding an amount of Rs58 billion have been proposed for agriculture, industry, livestock, tourism and forests.   

The government, he said, will spend Rs16.8 billion in transport sector during the next fiscal year.

The provincial government has allocated Rs10 billion for coronavirus out of which Rs40 billion would be reserved for compensating traders and business community. 

The minister said the government will give 10 per cent raise to the serving and retired government servants in addition to the adhoc allowance announced in the past.

 

Faisal Ali Ghumman is a senior editor at GNN, known for writing top quality content which garner very high readerships and has been covering every field of journalism, including politics, media, sports and scholarly articles. Faisal Ali Ghumman is nothing less than a Veteran Editor and has been writing for GNN for the past 3 months.

World

Taliban urge UN to allow them to speak

The UN credentials committee consisting of nine countries will decide the fate of the seat dispute.

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Taliban urge UN to allow them to speak

The Secretary-General of United Nations (UN) Antonio Guterres received a communication with the letterhead “Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan, Ministry of Foreign Affairs,” signed by “Ameer Khan Muttaqi” as “Minister of Foreign Affairs,” requesting to participate in the UN session of world leaders.


The letter said that they no longer recognize Ghulam Isaczai as their representative and nominated Suhail Shaheen as their representative to the UN.

The UN credentials committee consisting of nine countries will decide the fate of the seat dispute.

However, the Taliban participation in the current session is difficult.

Afghanistan is scheduled to give the last speech on the final day of the high-level meeting on Sept 27.

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Pakistan

Pakistan records dip in daily new COVID-19 cases

Islamabad: Pakistan has reported 2,928 new coronavirus cases in last 24 hours, the lowest spike in daily new infections in nearly a week.

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Pakistan records dip in daily new COVID-19 cases

Pakistan is presently experiencing the fourth wave of coronavirus which is said to be deadlier and more contagious than previous three COVID waves.

According to National Command and Operations Center (NCOC), around 2,928 cases of coronavirus were reported while 68 people succumbed to the disease in the last 24 hours, taking the total death toll to 27,072.

The total number of cases has reached 1,218,749.

As many as 1,125,952 patients have recovered from the disease with 4,960 critical cases.

Punjab              

The number of patients swelled to 419,423 in the province with 12,345 causalities.

Sindh

The number of infections has surged to 448,658 in the province, while the death toll has reached 7,224.

Khyber Pakhtunkhwa

The confirmed cases have surged to 170,391 in the province with 5,354 casualties.

Balochistan

There are 32,707 confirmed cases while 344 patients have died from the infection so far.

AJK and Gilgit-Baltistan

There are 33,628 coronavirus cases in the AJK while the death toll has reached 728. On the other hand, there are 10,222 cases in GB with 182 coronavirus deaths.

Islamabad

There are 103,720 cases in the capital city while 895 people have lost their lives.

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Pakistan

With 73 new fatalities, Pakistan's COVID-19 death count nears 27,000

Islamabad: Pakistan is witnessing daily surge in COVID-19 cases with authorities linking the upswing to the deadly fourth wave. Today country’s positivity rate is on 4.78%.

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With 73 new fatalities, Pakistan's COVID-19 death count nears 27,000

As per National Command and Control Center (NCOC), around 2,714 cases of coronavirus were reported while 73 people succumbed to the disease in the last 24 hours, taking the total death toll to 26,938.

Pakistan conducted a total of 56,733 tests in the last 24 hours.

As per the NCOC, total confirmed cases are 1,212,809 whereas 5,122 are under critical care.

Punjab           

The number of patients swelled to 416,901 in the province with 12,291 causalities.

Sindh

The number of infections has surged to 446,840 in the province, while the death toll has reached 7,192.

Khyber Pakhtunkhwa

The confirmed cases have surged to 169,429 in the province with 5,310 casualties.

Balochistan

There are 32,658 confirmed cases while 344 patients have died from the infection so far.

AJK and Gilgit-Baltistan

There are 33,490 coronavirus cases in the AJK while the death toll has reached 727. On the other hand, there are 10,198 cases in GB with 182 coronavirus deaths.

Islamabad

There are 103,293 cases in the capital city while 892 people have lost their lives.

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