Sindh Budget: With Rs132b, education gets lion’s share

Published: June 18, 2013
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PHOTO: FILE

PHOTO: FILE

KARACHI: With the announcement of the budget for the new fiscal year, it seems as if the provincial government’s ‘top priorities’ are clear: around 21 per cent of the total budgetary outlay of Rs617 billion has been allocated for education. This amount, which forms the lion’s share, comes to around Rs132.2 billion. 

The announced budget for education has kept in line with previous trends: for the fiscal year 2012-13, the government had proposed an unprecedented 60 per cent increase for the department. For the fiscal year before that, the allocation for the education sector was raised by a massive Rs45 billion.

While people across the province have yet to witness the fruits of the Pakistan Peoples Party-led government’s education budget for 2012-13, the government has proposed a further 18 per cent increase for recurrent expenditures and development in the educator sector.

While talking to The Express Tribune, Chief Minister Qaim Ali Shah said, “This budget, like the one we had presented for the fiscal year 2012-13, is reflective of the PPP government’s strong commitment to the development of education sector.” He added that his party’s aim is to get all children into classrooms where they would be provided quality education.

As far as the development budget goes, the amount allocated for the new fiscal year has been bumped up to Rs13.48 billion — Rs1 billion more than the outgoing fiscal year. The increase has come despite the fact that the government only managed to utilise around half of its allocated development budget in the fiscal year 2012-13. An amount of Rs118.7 billion has been allocated for recurring expenditures in the education department.

During his budget speech, the chief minister said that the government has made skills development a ‘political priority’ because of its importance in poverty alleviation. That’s why for the next fiscal year, the government has allocated Rs785.7 million for technical and vocational training.

The chief minister also said the government had planned to initiate the Sindh Education Reform Programme (SERP-II) for which the World Bank has agreed to provide an amount of US$400 million for four years till June 2017. The project’s objective, he said, was to raise enrollment levels by improving governance, accountability and administrative systems.

Projects in the pipeline

The provincial government has also claimed to reserve Rs2.2 billion as grants for the Sindh Education Foundation. This is the organisation which, in collaboration with the provincial education department, encouraged entrepreneurs to establish around 1,300 schools in slums under public-private partnership schemes. The entrepreneurs were, however, left in the lurch as the government drew back its promised funds, stirring quite a bit of brouhaha.

In the new fiscal year, the government intends to complete major development projects in the education sector. They include setting up one school in each district which would offer Cambridge International Examinations O’ and A’ level programmes. The estimated cost of this would be Rs1.25 billion. The government also intends to spend around Rs500 million on a computerised education management system. In addition, a comprehensive school will be established in each district.

When it comes to higher education, there are a couple of projects in the pipeline too: engineering colleges will be established in Khairpur and Larkana while Hala, Dadu and Lyari will each have their own law college. The government also intends to build a degree college for women in Naudero. Cadet colleges will also be established for girls in Shaheed Benazirabad and for boys in Dadu, Mithi and Khairpur.

Published in The Express Tribune, June 18th, 2013.

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Reader Comments (17)

  • Jun 18, 2013 - 2:20AM

    I thank you Imran Khan

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  • DevilHunterX
    Jun 18, 2013 - 2:39AM

    Printing fake degrees cost money.

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  • Shaami
    Jun 18, 2013 - 3:49AM

    Punjab is doing this for years but since it is Punjab so no Appreciation and since from the morning first it was KPK and then Sindh who were appreciated and Punjab which usually allocates more in percentage than other provinces for education is not mentioned at all.?

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  • Citizen
    Jun 18, 2013 - 8:27AM

    @Shaami:

    We are one country. One nation with 4 provinces. Instead of complaining as to whether or not Punjab was mentioned/praised, you should be happy that other provinces are taking matters into consideration – EVERYONE is to benefit.

    @DevilHunterX:

    It is this cynicism that will bring our country down before any good comes to it. People like you are what brings this country down more than any other measure. Shame on you for trying to bring down an attempt by the government even before it has taken any effect.

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  • Jadoon
    Jun 18, 2013 - 9:49AM

    @ Shaami: Punjab allocated 238 out of 897 billion, while KPK allocated 102 out of 344 billion. How is Punjab spending more on education?

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  • rajat
    Jun 18, 2013 - 10:35AM

    Since they’re increasing education budget, they could start a free mid-day meal scheme in government schools. This will help reduce school drop out rate and ensure more uniform education. Poor parents would send their children to government schools instead of seminaries/madrassas.

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  • ahmed
    Jun 18, 2013 - 10:36AM

    @Jadoon, i will not go into details but KPK education budget included the teachers pays and punjab’s education was without it. Nevertheless its a good competition at least in something which is education. hope it will going to pay dividends in the end.

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  • Cyrus
    Jun 18, 2013 - 10:49AM

    Hats Off to Sindh Govt for continued investment in Education pledge. However, i am sure that a comparison of previous budget and results would be part of plan.

    @Yousafhaque and his 7 likes: What is IK’s part here?

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  • Usman Aftab
    Jun 18, 2013 - 11:04AM

    I cannot digest this. There is something wrong/fishy with this report.

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  • Bilal
    Jun 18, 2013 - 11:12AM

    @Shaami:
    Get a life bro, Noora league has done nothing for education in punjab in recent past 5 years, I hope you are living in Punjab so you would know little more then people of other provinces,

    Worst ever situation of Primary education in Punjab, School dropouts have raised to highest number in history, Few thousand primary schools got shut down just for sake danish schools, Even in this budget they mentioned they will open 5-6 danish schools and allocated 100 Million of only few danish schools, What is a need of introducing new brand schools ? when you cannot develop the existing Govt school system in punjab.

    Noon league is only good at laptops,taxi’s,sasti roti scam, aashiyana housing scam, And using govt machinery to win on election day, Thats it.

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  • Observer
    Jun 18, 2013 - 11:18AM

    There is a difference between allocating budget for education and education department. This department has been there since Government of Sindh was reinstated in 1969. If you count the rupees spent and examine the outcome in terms of head count of literacy, institution of quality schools, expansion of enrolment rates or any other common parameter, the results will be most disappointing.

    The real story is that the employees of education department become the de facto polling staff in elections. Remember , the PPP has won the elections despite the pathetic performance it showed in the province regarding law and order conditions, economic activities and even execution of development projects. Yes, one thing has certainly enhanced – the number of vehicles carrying green number plates.

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  • KP
    Jun 18, 2013 - 11:30AM

    “In the new fiscal year, the government intends to complete major development projects in the education sector. They include setting up one school in each district which would offer Cambridge International Examinations O’ and A’ level programmes. The estimated cost of this would be Rs1.25 billion. The government also intends to spend around Rs500 million on a computerised education management system. In addition, a comprehensive school will be established in each district.”

    Why don’t they spend the amount in improving the curriculum and education system controlled by them. This will benefit more students then opening one Cambridge school in each district. If the provincial government feels that Cambridge system is better than theirs then they should not shy in implementing it across all the government schools in the province.

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  • Immy K lovaaa
    Jun 18, 2013 - 11:51AM

    Trying to out do PTI..
    Well done immy…change is already here but in various other forms..thanks for pressurising other parties into performing.

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  • Ashah
    Jun 18, 2013 - 11:55AM

    So back to empty desks, empty half finished buildings and rest of the funds coming back to the politiccians Via Contractors who is going to be accountable for spending this education Budget ?

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  • Sahar Khan
    Jun 18, 2013 - 4:50PM

    @Shaami:
    Oh please, to end with this provincialism. Punjab Punjab Punjab….every time. Having lived in Punjab I have suffered the worst electricity crunch. However, I completely agree with the re-shape in budget of other provinces. Punjab has enjoyed benefits, a lot in past over many fronts. It should not crave for appreciation and applauses any more. We as Pakistanis and not as Punjab dwellers should support every positive step by other provinces that is headed towards the development and progress of Pakistan.

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  • Sahar Khan
    Jun 18, 2013 - 4:54PM

    @Citizen:
    I cent percent agree to you, over opening eyes for Shaami!

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  • fahad
    Jun 22, 2013 - 3:39AM

    accept it its imran khan pressure thats it

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