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June 13, 2019

Intelligence Bureau budget cut by Rs1.669 bn

Top Story

June 13, 2019

ISLAMABAD: Compared to last fiscal, there is an increase of Rs33 million in the fresh budgetary demand for pays of the federal ministers, ministers of state and advisors and special assistants to the premier and for expenses to be incurred on the employees working with them.

According to the official documents, the proposed budget will be spent on the pay of cabinet members and officers, allowances, regular allowances, other allowances excluding traveling allowance, operating expenses, occupancy costs, travel and transportation, repairs and maintenance and transport.

There are a total of forty-six federal ministers (23), ministers of state (MoS) (5), special assistants (SAs) (13) and advisors (5).In the last federal budget, an amount of Rs254 million was allocated for these cabinet members and their staff while a sum of Rs287 million has now been demanded.

A 10pc slash was introduced in the salaries of the ministers while a special 25pc raise was given in the pays of their special private secretaries, private secretaries, and assistant private secretaries.

Under the head of the federal ministers and ministers of state, a sum of Rs214 million has been proposed in the new budget as against last year’s Rs207.495 million. For the advisors, an amount of Rs23.5 million has been demanded as compared to last fiscal’s Rs21.082 million. For the SAs, there are two entries in the budget documents. One proposed Rs29.5 million while it was Rs25.760 million last year. The second was Rs20 million whereas it was none last time.

Meanwhile, there was a cut of around Rs1.669 billion in the annual budget for the Intelligence Bureau (IB) compared to the last year’s allocation. The budget documents show that the demands for funds for the IB headquarters, its three regions categorized as Lahore, Karachi and North Headquarters Rawalpindi were separately listed.

All these proposals come to Rs3.661 billion whereas the IB was earmarked Rs5.33 billion last year. This time, the IB (supposedly the headquarters in Islamabad) was proposed to be given Rs2.641 billion. Then, a large sum of Rs1.072 billion was demanded for the IB Lahore, which will be spent under the heads “operating expenses” and “general”.

The IB Karachi will get Rs747.841 million to make a similar spending. The north headquarters Rawalpindi of the IB was recommended to be given an amount of Rs175.652 million. A sum of Rs98.425 million was demanded for the IB Academy Rawalpindi.

For the first time, funds amounting to Rs503.751 million were asked for the Office of the Joint Director General Intelligence, which appears to be different from the IB. Meanwhile, there was also a supplementary demand of Rs200.075 million being fifty percent share of federal government the other half borne by the Balochistan government for rehabilitation of armed militants under “Puraman Balochistan Policy”.

The National Accountability Bureau (NAB) spent an additional amount of Rs500 million apart from the payment of Rs190.2 million of law charges to foreign law firms/lawyers on international arbitration in the Broadsheet versus Pakistan government (a case that Pakistan has lost). An agreement was entered by the NAB with the Broadsheet during Pervez Musharraf’s regime.

There was a considerably large expenditure incurred on money laundering cases: Rs49.663 million by Federal Investigation Agency (FIA) Islamabad; Rs29.3 million by FIA Karachi; Rs830,000 by FIA Lahore; Rs207,000 by FIA Peshawar; and Rs3,139,000 by the newly created FIA link office at Tehran.

An amount of Rs27.5695 million was spent on the parliament building; Rs269.374 million on the Aiwan-e-Sadr; Rs1.136608 billion on other government buildings in Islamabad; Rs39.355 million on APGR building; Rs117.566 billion on the Cabinet Block; and Rs24.792 on the National Monument of Pakistan.

A sum of Rs78 million was demanded for POL charges of Punjab Rangers, deployed in Islamabad; Rs46.888 million paid to the federal police during general elections 2018; Rs222.590 million to the armed forces in aid of civil administration in Islamabad and Rs700,000 for equipment of CCTV camera at the Islamabad High Court.

A sum of Rs2.695 billion was paid to the Frontier Corps (FC) Balochistan (south) Turbat; Rs1.631 billion to North, Quetta; Rs2.291 billion to FC, Peshawar, and Rs2.225 billion to South Dera Ismail Khan.

There was a supplementary demand for Rs2.221 billion for Punjab Rangers for raising five new wings; and Rs227.6 million for the same force for purchase of 56 X operational vehicles (Phase I).

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