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June 30, 2006

Rs 20.5b supplementary budget approved

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June 30, 2006

PESHAWAR: Approving demands for grants worth Rs 20.583 billion unanimously after withdrawal of all the cut motions by the legislators, the NWFP Assembly Thursday passed the supplementary budget for the fiscal year 2005-06.

Lawmakers from both the treasury and opposition benches had submitted 49 cut motions with assembly secretariat challenging the government for overspending during the fiscal year 2005-06.

At the very outset of the proceedings the movers were enthused to challenge overspending by different provincial departments during the outgoing fiscal year, however none of the MPAs pressed for voting.

The house witnessed fiery remarks, when Provincial Revenue Minister Mualana Asmatullah tabled a huge demand for grants of Rs 12.455 billion, pleading that as a result of earthquake the amount had been spent on assessment of the destruction across five districts of the province. "During the survey a huge amount was spent on hiring offices, vehicles, stationery and other requirements, the minister argued.

Israrullah Gandapur and Qazi Asad said that already the federal government with financial assistance of world community had already allocated huge amounts for conducting the assessment surveys and other requirements leaving no room for the revenue department to spend such a huge amount.

Further underlining the transparency of the revenue departments the movers also cited the spending of Rs 180 million over special additional allowance, and challenged the provincial revenue minister prove its justification.

However, as a result of repeated requests by the provincial revenue minister and some support of senior parliamentarians, they withdrew the cut motions against the demand for grants of Rs 12.455 billion and it was approved unanimously.

After withdrawal of cut motion of Rs 100 moved by Israrullah Gandapur, the house unanimously passed demand for grants of Rs. 1.224 billion presented by Provincial Minister for

Finance, Planning and Development Sirajul Haq as a special programme for social development.

Later, as a result of conciliatory efforts of the chair, all the movers withdrew their cut motions, and the House approved Rs 23,6.076 million for provincial administration, Rs 1.169 billion for education, Rs 108.48 million for prison and local audit, Rs 0.948 million for information technology, Rs 223.953 million for home and tribal affairs, Rs 702.772 billion for police administration, Rs 43.958 million for law and justice, Rs 254.904 million for health, Rs 53.194 million for communication and works.

In the same way Rs 186.296 million were approved as demands for grants for construction and repair of roads and bridges, Rs 27.692 million for public health and engineering, Rs 20.323 million for local bodies and rural development, Rs 21.179 million for irrigation, Rs 61.436 million for wild life protection, Rs 52.961 million for environment, forest and transport, Rs 472,000 for fisheries, Rs 14.873 million for commerce and industry, Rs 4.895 million for mines and natural resources, Rs 897,000 for family planning and population welfare, Rs 41.457 million for technical education, Rs 2.426 for labour and manpower, Rs 30.427 for information and public relations, Rs 10.059 for special education, Rs 4.562 for zakat and ushar, Rs 2.9 million for sports and culture, Rs 30 million for payment of foreign loans, Rs 570.478 million for development, and Rs 440.918 million for civil defence. Following approval of the supplementary budget NWFP Speaker Bakht Jehan Khan prorogued the session sine die.

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