ISLAMABAD: Prime Minister Imran Khan on Tuesday directed concerned authorities to make public names of government officials who were beneficiaries of the Benazir Income Support Programme (BISP).
“We cannot forgive people who deprived the poor of their rights,” said PM Imran. “The names of the looters should be made public.”
Earlier, BISP Chairperson Dr Sania Nishtar tweeted on a micro-blogging website saying 2,543 government officers of grade 17 and above had received assistance meant for the poor.
She added that the officers had got themselves registered among beneficiaries from the social safety net and received the assistance meant for the poorest of the poor. They have been excluded from the programme.
Nishtar had confirmed that disciplinary action has been initiated against the officers. She added that the BISP has also written to the provincial chief secretaries and federal ministries whose officers had illegally enrolled themselves as BISP beneficiaries.
According to official data, the highest number of government officials receiving BISP assistance were from Sindh. As many as 1,122 officers of grade 17 and above from the province had been BISP beneficiaries.
The second-highest number came from Balochistan where 741 government officials were signed up for the poverty alleviation scheme. From Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa, 403 government officials availed the BISP funds, while 137 were from Punjab.
From the federal government, 62 officers received the programme funds. Additionally, one officer of the Pakistan Railways, 22 of Azad Jammu and Kashmir, and 49 of Gilgit Baltistan were also marked as undeserving recipients of the BISP.
In December 2019, Dr Nishtar had announced that the government had conducted forensic data analysis and identified 820,165 undeserving people who were availing BISP assistance.
She had said the government was ‘exiting’ these people from the programme, adding that this exercise would be conducted annually to weed out any beneficiary who had achieved financial stability so that the funds could be disbursed to more deserving people.