PA passes budget at Aiwan-e-Iqbal session

40 ‘demands for grants’ of over Rs2,734 billion with no cut motions also passed

The Punjab government on Wednesday easily passed the provincial budget for fiscal year 2022-23 in the Punjab Assembly session at the Aiwan-e-Iqbal.

The treasury didn’t face any resistance as there was no opposition in the house.

The government also passed 40 ‘demands for grants’ of over Rs 2,734 billion with no cut motions of the opposition that is holding its parallel session in the Punjab Assembly building. The session of the opposition was adjourned till June 28.

Finance Minister Sardar Awais Laghari also concluded the general discussion on the annual budget with his speech.

The session was chaired by Panel of Chairman Khalil Tahir Sindhu that started after a delay of more than two hours. Punjab Chief Minister Hamza Shehbaz was also present at the session.

Finance Minister Laghari welcomed the suggestions given by lawmakers and also thanked those who drew attention towards core issues. He told the house that the Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) government will provide maximum relief to the people of Punjab.

“The province is passing through a critical phase but we will make all-out efforts to put it on the right track. Those sectors that had been ruined by the flawed policies of the previous regime will be upgraded,” he maintained.

He went on to say that the chief minister will ensure that the people have access to medical facilities, adding that the practice of looting the poor in the garb of ‘Sehat Card’ will be put to an end. “Our government will meet the international standard in road infrastructure that unfortunately had been neglected by the previous PTI government,” he said.

“The masses will be given relief in electricity bills through green energy.”

He went on to say that the province is facing many challenges and “we will have to serve collectively to get rid of problems. “Over Rs20 billion interest-free loans will be given to the masses,” he added.

Panel of Chairman Khalil Tahir Sindhu said that the opposition was repeatedly invited to submit cut motions but all in vain.

Later, the chair adjourned the session to meet again today (Thursday) at 2pm.