KARACHI: The Sindh Assembly on Saturday opened debate on budget for FY 2020-21 with the treasury calling it a 'balanced' financial plan but opposition sees it a 'biased' approach towards the urban centres.
As Speaker Aga Siraj Khan Durrani opened the floor for the discussion, PPP's Dr Sohrab Sarki said the government presented the budget 2020-21 in a financially constrained situation but a balanced one. He appreciated the PPP Sindh government for its efforts.
MQM's Rashid Khilji called the budget a 'biased' financial document serving neither rural nor the urban parts of province. He rejected the budget and questioned the lengthy budget figures, saying that the proposed economic zone in Larkana is unseen yet despite allocation over the past, while Karachi and Hyderabad struggle to find potable water for its citizens. "Where has gone the billion of rupees," he asked.
Via video link, PPP's Ghanwar Ali Khan Isran said the Sindh government, despite financial crunch, has spurred the salaries and pensions of govt employees, and criticized the federal government for not rising its employees' monthly pay. He said the federal government is confused on Covid-19 lockdown procedures; either it should go for a complete or a smart one.
Raja Azhar of PTI criticized the Sindh Food Department's performance, saying that he had dispatched three letters to the department and one to the Sindh Chief Minister Syed Murad Ali Shah but no one responded. "The Chief Minister clamor for not getting response from the prime minister but he ignores such replies himself," he added.
GDA lawmaker Abdul Razzaq Rahimo said the Sindh government never consulted with the opposition during the budget evolution, saying that it had not sought any development scheme. Killings from starvation in Thar continue, saying that the government should focus on Tharparkar district and increase healthcare facilities to the people.
He said there had not been set up 300 RO plants, questioning whether there was only one company in the country which was allotted the contract. He also demanded for the probe against the RO plant installing company by the NAB, saying that there was billions of rupees allocation in the budgets for Tharparkar but failed to trigger development. Several other legislators also took part in the budget debate. The house will now meet on Monday.