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Punjab, KP urge Centre to release funds under NFC award

The Punjab and Khyber Pakhtunkhwa (KP) governments Saturday urged the federal administration to ensure immediate payment of funds piling on the Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif-led government with complaints.

Addressing a joint press conference in Lahore, Punjab Finance Minister Mohsin Leghari – flanked by KP Finance Minister Taimur Khan Jhagra and Punjab’s spokesperson Musarrat Jamshed Cheema – said the Centre has not yet paid Rs176 billion to the province.

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He added that the federal government has also not issued a premium on the health card’s contract. Jhagra said that Rs120 billion have not been transferred in the last seven months, while Rs30 billion have been deducted from the budget of tribal people.  “Only Rs5 billion have been given to the tribal areas out of the Rs55 billion. Deductions impact all of Pakistan’s security,” he said.

“The federal government is not releasing funds which have halted several development projects. The situation in the tribal districts has worsened due to lack of funds,” Jhagra added. The minister added that despite the announcement of the prime minister’s relief package worth Rs10 billion for the flood-affected population, affectees in the province have not received a single penny.

He demanded immediate payment of funds from the federal government citing financial problems. Jhagra said that when Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) Chairman Imran Khan was the prime minister, he would take responsibility for all four provinces. Jhagra claimed that this is the first time that all provinces are complaining against the federal government. He added that the federal government has issued Rs16 billion for its members of the National Assembly, while Rs300 million have been allocated for VIPs.

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He further added that Rs30 billion from the National Finance Commission Award have not been transferred which will cause a loss of Rs60 billion to KP. “A loss of Rs200 billion will be incurred following the federal government’s policy,” the KP minister said.


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