ISLAMABAD – In an amazing move, the federal government has had given tax exemption of exactly Rs 320.8 billion to the elite business class, whereas it has no plan to give relief to government employees in the budget of 2014-15.
According to the documented information received from the National Assembly Secretariat, Federal Finance Minister Ishaq Dar informed the national assembly that government is undertaking no such plan to increase the salaries or allowance of government employees in next fiscal year.
However, while replying to a question posed by Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI)’s lawmaker, Dar told the worthy house that from July 2013 to February 2014 the government waived Rs 320.8 billion in duties and taxes.
The minister said “these exemptions are on account of all SROs issued from time to time, which are operational till date and not only those issued under the current financial year.”
In reply to another question asked by lawmaker of Jamat-e-Islami, Sahibzada Mohammad Yaqub, the minister said the government had no plans to increase salary of government employees in the next fiscal year.
Answering a question put by Dr Azra Fazal Pechuho of the PPP about foreign loans received by the present government from the IMF, World Bank and Asian Development Bank, Mr Dar said an amount of $203.2 million was received from the World Bank during the first six months of the current financial year and it was being spent on bank-driven projects.
He said the government negotiated and signed three loans — for the Social Protection Development Project ($430m), Jamshoro Power Generation Project ($900m) and MFF-Power Distribution Enhancement Investment Programme Tranche-III ($245m) — with the Asian Development Bank during the same period.