Rs 24.36m spent on Haj guides last Haj
ISLAMABAD: The government spent Rs 24.36 million on 229 Khuddamul Hajjaj during the last Haj, Federal Religious Affairs Minister Ijazul Haq informed the National Assembly during Question Hour on Wednesday.
The minister said the ministries of defence and interior, provincial police departments and Boy Scouts Association nominated these ‘khuddams’ following certain criteria.
He said the expenses came under the heads of travelling allowance (Rs 6.72 million), accommodation, including residence and offices (Rs 4.035 million) and dinning allowance (Rs 13.597 million).
The minister said that the number of people intending to perform Haj next year would be finalised after consultations with the Saudi authorities. Syed Safwanullah, housing and works minister, told the House that 207 occupants of the government residences had obtained stay orders from various courts during the last two years. The minister informed the House that 33 residential flats lay unused in Sectors G-6 and G-7, while occupants of 213 flats were not paying rent.
Lt Gen Javed Ashraf Qazi, education minister, said a total of 329 posts were vacant in federal government institutions of which 211 were for lecturers, 89 for assistant professors, eight for associate professors and three for professors. He said the Federal Public Service Commission was responsible for appointment on some of the seats while others would be filled through promotions. The minister also elaborated on the government’s plan to recruit 490 English teachers in Islamabad on contract basis this year.
Qazi denied any proposal for increasing salaries of teachers saying all of them were permanent employees of the government and enjoyed special facilities including pension. Sumaira Malik, state tourism minister, told the House that her ministry had taken certain steps and had arranged some international-level events inviting the participation of foreign dignitaries to promote tourism in Pakistan.
She said that at present the ministry was in process of developing a multi-dimensional market strategy in consultation with private sector however the opposition was not satisfied and demanded to know what the ministry had done so far for the promotion of tourism. “You always use 9/11 incident and the status of Pakistan being a frontline state against anti-terror war to excuse your mistakes. You should tell the House what you have achieved to remove this negative impression about the country,” Raja Pervez Ashraf said.