KARACHI: The Pak Sarzameen Party (PSP) criticised on Wednesday the Sindh government for ‘not consulting other parties’ on the budget for the 2017-18 fiscal year.
Addressing a press conference at the PSP headquarters, Pakistan House, the party’s Senior Vice-Chairperson Dr Sagheer Ahmed said that the ruling Pakistan Peoples Party (PPP) did not take other parties on board, which was undemocratic behaviour.
Dr Ahmed also condemned the opposition benches where PSP’s rival Muttahida Qaumi Movement dominates. “The silence of opposition parties, despite being neglected in the budget, was meaningful,” he said.
“Winds of reconciliation have started billowing and a glimpse of it can be seen in the Sindh Assembly,” the PSP leader warned, adding that this concord, however, affected people of the country’s largest city, Karachi.
He said that around half of the population of Sindh was centered in Karachi, which serves as a melting pot for all the ethnicities in the country. “The government reacted in a step-motherly manner towards the people of the city,” he said.
For a city with a population of over 25 million people, he said, the provincial government allocated Rs20 billion only. On Tuesday, Chief Minister Murad Ali Shah issued a clarification, saying Rs71 billion had been allocated for the city. “Our question to them [the provincial government and Centre] is why no special package has been set for the country’s financial hub,” he said.
He commented that Shah was asking the Centre for rights but was not providing any to the province himself. “[Due to power issues with the local bodies] only half of the amount set aside for development last year was used,” he said.
Dr Ahmed said his party rejected the provincial budget because the government did not act according to its promises.