Islamabad, Jan 30 (ANI): The Pakistan Government is lavishly spending billions of rupees of taxpayers' money to provide prohibitively expensive travel comforts to VIPs when the poor and needy are crying out for basic necessities like flour.
Documentary evidence reveals that the NWFP Government has purchased a Rs.500 million VIP chopper for the Governor while the federal government is in the process of buying five helicopters.
The copters that the federal government is purchasing include two for VIPs, costing the public exchequer at least Rs.5.3 billion. Three of the five helicopters will be used for emergency services, including relief and rescue work.
But former Cabinet Division Secretary Ghiasuddin explained the order for the five helicopters had been placed prior to Prime Minister Yousuf Raza Gilani's takeover.
Only in recent years, in addition to two VIP business jets costing billions, a fleet of more than 40 bullet proof limousines were bought for over Rs.3 billion for bigwigs, The News reported.
Key government functionaries, including top defence officials and spymasters, followed suit and secured highly expensive bulletproof limousines.
Only a couple of years back, the government had bought two high-priced VIP business jets, including an Airbus, for the Prime Minister and the President in compliance with ex-premier Shaukat Aziz's orders.
A 12-seater Gulfstream, a more exclusive but smaller business jet, was purchased for 28 million dollars. Under the agreement, this executive jet was to be returned to the manufacturer for 22 million dollars after two years when the company would deliver Pakistan a new version for 33 million dollars. The money involved in the other VIP business Airbus deal is, however, not known.
All such spending was made beyond the budgetary allocation, as was the case of the controversial purchase of over 40 bulletproof Mercedes vehicles for VIPs, costing the public exchequer over Rs.3 billion. (ANI)