The palatial Prime Minister House welcomed its new resident on Saturday when the 25th Prime Minister of Pakistan, Raja Pervaiz Ashraf, took charge of the office.
Prime Minister Ashraf was presented a guard of honour and salute by a contingent of the armed forces from all three service branches – the army, the navy and the air force.
The prime minister inspected the guard of honour and was then introduced to the staff and officials of the Prime Minister House.
PM Ashraf then started his first day in the office with an informal meeting with his staff members and officials.
Prime Minister Ashraf is expected to have a more than comfortable stay at his new abode, given that the PM House has been allocated Rs702.8 million in the budget for fiscal 2012-13, an increase of 28.6% over the last fiscal.
Of this, a whopping Rs20 million has been allocated for the upkeep of gardens, Rs37.4 million for conveyance and motorcars of the Prime Minister’s Secretariat, and Rs20.5 million for domestic travel and transport expenses of the premier.
Change of status
Meanwhile, following his dismissal from the post, former prime minister Yousaf Raza Gilani moved out of the Prime Minister House and into the Presidency, Express News reported on Saturday.
Gilani, who had earlier shifted to the Islamabad Club after he was disqualified by the Supreme Court, shifted to the sixth floor of the Presidency today where he was given three rooms for himself and his family.
Sources said there are security reasons behind this decision as other places are not secure enough for him to reside in.
According to Express News, the security protocol provided to Gilani, including his security staff, has also been transferred to Prime Minister Ashraf.
Security measures taken at the Prime Minister House in Multan have also been recalled and a lone police mobile van is stationed there.
With additional input from APP and NEWS DESK
Published In The Express Tribune, June 24th, 2012.
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