Monday January 30, 2023

Govt decides to cut PSB’s fund by 10pc

January 25, 2023

ISLAMABAD: The Ministry for Inter-Provincial Coordination (IPC) while pursuing the govt’s austerity drive has imposed a 10 percent cut in releasing the third quarterly installment of the Pakistan Sports Board’s (PSB) non-development fund that currently stands at around Rs235 million.

A well-informed source has told ‘The News’ that the efforts have been made to introduce cuts on those expenditures where no hurdles would be created on the upgradation and sports promotion work.

“The ministry has given a go-ahead to release 25 percent of the total 35 percent amount that was due for the third quarter. A 10 percent cut has been introduced keeping in view the government’s austerity drive. The 10 percent cut, however, will have no direct impact on the sports promotion or even on the salary as well as perks and privileges of the employees,” the source added.

Though a good amount of the non-development funds caters the need of employees’ salaries and other related expenditures, a healthy amount goes to the federation grants, international coaches’ salaries and teams’ trip abroad.

“We are not applying any cut on federations’ grants nor have any plans to deprive the coaches of their due and promised salary. The teams will travel abroad where it is necessary. When it comes to sports promotion and training of the athletes, there will be no hurdles. However, some part of the amount goes to upgradation work which may be stopped for the time being. There are some other expenditures where austerity measures will be implemented as it was need of the hour,” the source said. The official hoped that from next quarter onward the PSB would be getting the full amount.

“Hopefully from next quarter onward (which will be the last for the financial year) the remaining amount of the non-development fund will be released.”

Almost 20 months back, former Minister for IPC Dr Fehmida Mirza surrendered Rs440 million to the Finance Division (The News splashed the story on May 28, 2021) and hardly any federation including the Pakistan Hockey Federation (PHF) was released any amount.

The amount surrendered at that time pegged back sports’ activities that were almost at a standstill. However, even under the prevailing financial crunch, the efforts are being made to give federations, athletes and the coaches their due share from the non-development fund.