PESHAWAR: Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Finance Minister Taimur Khan Jhagra on Friday presented provincial budget worth over Rs1,118 billion.
Addressing the provincial assembly in Peshawar, Taimur Jhagra said Rs199 billion were allocated for the merged districts and Rs919 billion for the settled district. Rs371 billion had been allocated for development work including Rs100 billion for tribal districts, with 10 percent increase from the previous budget, he added.
The KP government set Rs21,000 minimum wage for workers, while 10 percent ad hoc relief has been announced for public servants.
The finance minister said Rs23 billion will be spent on Sahulat Health Card. He said Rs500 billion were reserved for development plus budget. “Sehat Card Plus, provision of furniture in schools and increase in budget of medicines will be included in the development plus budget,” he said.
He said Rs230 million will be given to students in scholarships. Female students will be given scholarships on getting more than 80% marks. Rs2.6 billion allocated for monthly stipend of 20,000 scholars of mosques.
The KP government allocated Rs200 billion for the education sector.
Jhagra said Rs10 bn were earmarked for subsidy on wheat. Registration fees for vehicles reduced to Rs1 in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa and budget for the tourism sector has been increased from Rs2 billion to Rs12 billion, he added.
Rs424 allocated for service delivery budget, which will be targeted to improve crucial services to the public. Salaries of teachers, doctors, nurses and provision of medicines to hospitals, provision of fuel for Rescue 1122 ambulances included in the service delivery budget.
“The minimum age for retirement is being set as 55 years and limit for job service up to 25 years, whichever comes later. This will save Rs12 billion annually. Amendment in pension rules and reduction in the number of pensioners will save Rs1 billion a year. Pension of the dead worker will be given to either his widow, children or parents. Widows’ pension is being increased by 100 percent,” said the finance minister.
Reduction in taxes
The ratio of land tax is being cut to zero in a bid to provide relief to small growers. 0.7 million farmers will be given relief. Small vehicles could be registered for as low fee as Rs1, while big vehicles’ fee would be charged one percent of its price. Everyone is being exempted of professional tax, while ratio on 12 other taxes is being trimmed.