An alternative to RGST

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Prime Minister Yousuf Raza Gilani during his visit to Lahore on Sunday while showing resolve to implement 10-point agenda of PML(N) has asked the Nawaz League to come up with alternative to the Reformed General Sales Tax (RGST) to generate revenue. The PM also once said in the National Assembly from where he should get money to run the government.

If the government cannot generate revenue, they can reduce their unnecessary expenditures which run into billions of rupees. The use of private jets by the president, PM, CMs and governors must be stopped forthwith and all consultations could be made on telephones or they should use commercial flights. All parties/dining/refreshments at the state expense must be stopped forthwith. The size of the cabinet be immediately reduced to the bare minimum. The fleet of cars allotted and being used by the ministers and other government officials for free must be cut down to only one staff car per minister/official with a maximum ceiling of POL consumption.

The orientation tours of foreign countries by the parliamentarians must be totally stopped till we recover from economic crisis. No government official be sent abroad for medical treatment or check up when all facilities are available in the country. Besides downsizing the cabinet, the government should also downsize the Embassy staff in foreign countries who are real parasites on our foreign exchange vis a vis their output.

There are scores of other areas like written off loans, billions looted in various financial scams in PSM, PIA, OGDCL, NICL, Bank of Punjab, etc. The recovery of these looted amounts would have enough revenue for the development works for the poor masses and running of other legitimate projects in the country. There is no doubt that our rulers are spending billions in their self maintenance which must be stopped forthwith. They know it and still they are callous in spending government money with impunity.

MUHAMMAD AZHAR KHWAJA

Lahore