Army seeks whopping Rs 81.46 billion hike in defence budget


ISLAMABAD – The Pakistan Army has sought an increase of Rs 81.46 billion in the defence budget in fiscal year 2011-12 against current year allocations in the wake of operation against terrorists in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa and the Tribal Areas. As per details of the defence budget provided by the Defence Ministry to parliament, all three forces had recommended proposals of Rs 5.825 trillion, but the ministry had cut the amount by Rs 59 billion in view of severe economic meltdown and sent proposal of Rs 5.236 trillion for the defence budget to the Finance Ministry.
The Finance Ministry has agreed to the proposal in principle and a final approval will be obtained from Prime Minister Yousaf Raza Gilani. As per documents, the Pakistan Army, Air Force and Navy sought Rs 202 billion in excess in the upcoming defence budget for salaries and other perks for employees, over Rs 127 billion for TA/DA, PIA tickets, railway charges, repairs of vehicles, telephone charges, stationery goods, ration, military farms, medical stores, security and development of the nuclear programme, over Rs 147 billion for procurement of defence equipment, defence imports, custom surcharge, stores and stocks and Rs 45.83 billion for revenue works, MES, payment of utility bills, capital works, repair and furnishing of residences of military officers and other ranks.
The pension of retired army personnel is not included in this amount, which would be paid out of civil budget. This runs into billion of rupees. The expenses being incurred on war against terrorism will also be paid by the federal government from a separate budget and these expenses are not part of the defence budget.