Election reforms need of the hour to end rigging: Fawad

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ISLAMABAD, Minister for Information and Broadcasting Chaudhry Fawad Hussain Tuesday took exception to the non serious attitude of opposition parties giving preference to personal interests over issues of national importance.

Addressing a post cabinet briefing, he termed electoral reforms ‘need of the hour’ and regretted that the opposition was only interested to save the money they had looted from national exchequer while in power.

He said the government had approached the opposition several times for holding talks for evolving consensus over the issue of electoral reforms, but it was unfortunate that they could not see beyond personal interests.

They only wanted that they should not be asked to return national wealth looted and plundered by them and their leadership while being into the power, he said while asserting that most of them were not even interested in becoming the prime minister of the country.

The minister said the government had a clear vision to grant voting right to the overseas Pakistanis who were backbone of the national economy.

“It is not possible that we do not allow overseas Pakistanis to cast vote in the election,” he added.

Giving details of the decisions taken in the Federal Cabinet meeting chaired by Prime Minister Imran Khan, he said the proposal for 44 per cent increase in the current house rent ceiling of the government employees  had been green lighted.

It was aimed at providing major relief to public servants in the wake of high rates of houses fares in the major cities especially in Islamabad, he added.

The increase would be applicable to the federal government employees from grade 1 to 22, he said, adding the initiative was taken after reviewing the increase in the houses’ fares in major cities.

Such practice was repeated after every three years, he noted.

The minister said the forum accorded approval to include Uzbekistan in the business visa list. The move was aimed at strengthening ties with the Central Asian state as well as providing relief to the business community of the two countries, he added.

The Cabinet okayed the import of films from the regional countries so that the film industry could be uplifted by reviving cinema culture through screening of such movies.

Fawad said Jammu and Kashmir State Property Budget worth Rs 190.383 million for the Fiscal Year 2021-22 had also been approved by the Cabinet.