Communication, PR ministries in dire straits | Pakistan Today

Communication, PR ministries in dire straits

ISLAMABAD – Taking strict notice of the illegal occupation of Pakistan Railways’ land by the Rangers, Janbaz and other security forces, and of the delay in the communication ministry’s projects, the Public Accounts Committee (PAC) on Tuesday demanded an urgent resolution of these issues, seeking report for the same in 3 months.
The PAC met with Chaudhry Nisar Ali Khan in the chair to review the audit objections in the ministries of communication and railways for 2007-08.
Khan, warning PR officials, said if the PR land is not evacuated, the concerned official will be summoned to a PAC meeting.
Reviewing the Audit Report 2007-08 of the ministries of Railways and Communication, Ch Nisar asked PR officials to constitute task forces within a month for recoveries of outstanding dues, telling them that PAC will intervene if any organization refuses prompt payment.
Audit officials informed the committee that PR had to recover over Rs 2 billion from different organizations. “Rangers and Pakistan Army have illegally occupied 1050 acres of Railways land and the rent is not being paid either,” told audit officials.
Secretary Railways Raja Shahid told the committee that PR had suffered a loss in the head of Shadi Train (Marriage Train) that was started in 2006 while Rs 2 million had been spent on it. PAC asked PR officials to resolve this matter in one month and to inform the committee.
Raja Shahid further said PR could not be compared to Indian Railways as trillion of rupees had been invested in railways in India. Audit officials also informed the committee that that PR also suffered a loss of Rs 150 million under the head of high speed diesel.
While reviewing the audit report of Communication Ministry, it was informed that National Highway Authority (NHA) had started the projects which required around Rs 620 billion for completion and if they are not completed in the stipulated time the cost will further escalate. Finance Secretary Waqar Masud said that the Finance Division was providing funds to NHA in the form of loan while NHA was not returning debt amount.

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