Islamabad [Pakistan], June 12 (ANI): Pakistan opposition parties including Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) and Pakistan Peoples Party (PPP) on Friday decided to give Imran Khan's government a 'tough time' and vowed to not let the national budget for FY 2021-22 pass through the National Assembly.
PPP Chairman Bilawal Bhutto Zardari, speaking to the media alongside PML-N President Shahbaz Sharif after the budget session, said that the people who might have been listening to Minister for Finance Shaukat Tarin as he unveiled the government's proposals, "must have been thinking that this is some other country's budget", reported Geo News.
"The prime minister and finance minister's claims of economic growth are baseless amid such a situation," said Bilawal.
The PPP chairman said the finance ministers' claims were akin to "rubbing salt in the wounds" of the Pakistanis who are "suffering" due to the government's policies.
Bilawal said that the party's lawmakers will entrust their votes to Opposition leader Shahbaz Sharif to use against Imran Khan's proposed budget.
"All differences among the Opposition parties aside, we will collectively respond to this selected and incompetent government's budget [...] I reiterate my promise that all of PPP's MNAs will entrust their votes to Opposition Leader Shahbaz Sharif to use against this government's budget," he said.
"When poor people are dying of hunger, unemployment and inflation are skyrocketing, how can they claim that the country is witnessing economic growth?" asked Shahbaz.
The opposition also devised a joint strategy for a no-confidence motion against NA Deputy Speaker Qasim Suri, reported Geo News.
Responding to a question, Shahbaz said that the Opposition parties would devise a joint strategy for the no-confidence motion that was moved against National Assembly Deputy Speaker Qasim Suri a day earlier.
Earlier, Finance Minister Shaukat Tarin was greeted by jeers from the Opposition benches, with members shouting slogans and taunting the finance minister by laughing loudly as he praised PM Imran Khan's economic initiatives while presenting the budget for the fiscal year 2021-22, reported Geo News.
Undeterred and aided by a pair of earphones that allowed him to drown out the ruckus around him, Tarin announced that the total outlay of the budget for the upcoming year had been kept at Rs 8,478 billion, with the tax target set at an ambitious Rs 5,829 billion.
Speaking about the various allocations made by the government, Tarin said Rs 480 billion had been allotted for pension payments of both civilians and retired military officers.
He said the defence budget of the country had been allocated Rs 1,370 billion while the government had earmarked Rs 1,168 for development and non-development grants for provinces.
He said the government had allocated Rs 682 billion for subsidies to various sectors of the economy, adding that Rs 479 billion had been allocated to run the civil government.
Tarin said the government was serious in stemming the spread of the coronavirus and keeping its adverse effects at bay, adding that the government had set aside Rs 100 billion for it, reported Geo News. (ANI)