PM says govt can't give Hajj subsidy owing to soaring debt

Published: February 12, 2019
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Prime Minister Imran Khan says he wished sending Pakistanis for Hajj free of charge but the soaring debt crisis forced the government’s hand.

He was speaking at the inauguration ceremony of the Railway Live tracking system and Thal Express Train service at the Prime Minister House in Islamabad on Tuesday.

The prime minister said the ongoing accountability drive will rid the nation of corruption.

He lambasted previous governments for “burying Pakistan in debt”, adding that,”the nation would send pilgrims for hajj for free if we did not have these shortcomings.”

The country’s premier said that in the PM House alone costs had been slashed by 30 per cent.

“Lavish dinners would be hosted here, but you can all see a drastic change here,” he said.

The PM said he directed all ministries to cut costs, adding that,” If I can cut costs by 30 per cent the onus is on other ministries to at least slash their expenditures by 10 per cent.”

All office holders, he added, have a responsibility “as this is not their personal wealth but belongs to the people of Pakistan”.

About the increase in gas prices, PM Khan said the government was compelled to increase gas prices as the industry suffered immense losses as well as theft.

Foreign investment is coming to Pakistan and the future is bright for the country, the PM concluded.

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