x

Like our Facebook Page

   
Early Times Newspaper Jammu, Leading Newspaper Jammu
 
Breaking News :   Mehbooba's PDP is over? | Radha Kumar praises Dogra rule, tears into London | After Geelani's family, who is eyeing to get next Govt job? Ask people | Pak stooges want every Kashmiri to get killed | Secretary harasses official for helping whistleblower | BJP 'exposed' for playing politics of religion | Over 40 ULBs fails to submits their accounts | Instead of raising public issues councilors say their salary package is meagre | Pakistan infiltration ops shifting to Jammu border: NIA report | JKTUC calls on AFCON, JP management | Cong celebrates party victory in assembly elections | Councillor Ward No 42 holds open darbar | Commuters rue lack of communication facilities on Mughal Road | New trends emerging to keep Kashmir issue alive | Fiddling with Autonomy of RBI | Dr Urjit Patel's first Governor to setp down - Loss to Indian Economy | Advisor Kumar reviews security scenario in Kashmir | Third gender soon to get welfare policy in state : Officials | Amateur Championship Cup 2018 organized at Jammu Tawi Golf Course | Lawyer should be hardworking, honest, dedicated: Gita Mittal to Law Students | Ishuk, Vidit enter semis of 6-Red Ball event | SMVDU wins opening tie in NZ Cricket | ‘Roads within municipal limits are in worst condition' | DHS Jammu overlooks rural health institutions | Govt's anti-corruption war remains a farce | Does SSH administration charge for the services? | On a day of strike police claims 100 percent attendance in examination for different posts | Sub district hospitals face shortage of medicos, other facilities | Police arrest arms supplier | Politicians, officers skip Vijay Diwas event at Udhampur | Not a single development scheme sanctioned for Ramnagar in BJP-PDP rule: Harsh | Army asks J&K citizens to not march to Badami Bagh base camp on JRL call | Father seeks return of his `mentally challenged' son from across the LoC | Locals rue dilapidated condition of Awa Kalaban-Choroon road | BJP blames separatists, mainstream parties for civilian killings in Kashmir | Driver killed after vehicle falls into gorge in Ramban | 120 kg poppy straw recovered three arrested | Gurudwara gutted in fire due to short circuit | Coldest night of season in Srinagar, mercury drop to minus 4.2 deg C | Kashmir NH through for one-way traffic; Leh highway, Mughal road remain closed | VHP organises 'Dharam Sabha' in Jammu, pledges to build Ram Temple | People suffering due to lack of vision and bad governance by BJP: Dr Manohar | KP migrants stage protest demonstration | Pak tried to take Kashmir by force post 1962 Sino-India war:Lt Gen Brar | 16 CRPF jawans injured as bus skidded off road | Two bovines smuggling bids foiled, 41 cattle rescued, 5 arrested | 7,380 candidates appear in Fire and Emergency services recruitment test | One held with intoxicants | 2 Narco smugglers arrested with 120 kg Poppy Straw; 2 local conduits also in net | Modi Government fails to do anything for brave soldiers | Pahari speaking community demands ST status | BSNL's services demanded at Balakote | Hundreds of trekkers throng Mansar Great Trek Festival | J&K team won by 130 runs | Surinsar-Sagoona Tree Talk held | Vaibhav, Stany share top spot with 8 pts in Chess | JSS observes annual sports meet "UDAAN | Kids Planet Public School celebrates Annual day | KV celebrates Grand Parents Day | DPS Jammu receives Techno Smart School, Brainfeed School Excellence award | Natrang stages "Tauba Tauba" | Advanced laparoscopic surgeries at SSH | Super-speciality OPD camp organized | One day capacity building workshop organized | Bhandara organized | Sant Nirankari Charitable Foundation donates 55 units of blood | SMVDU faculty development centre organises workshop on communication skills | JPBEF distributes books among needy students | Gite Jyanti Samaroh' held at Udhampur | One killed, 5 injured in road mishap | Vijay Diwas of 1971 war celebrated | JKJEA hails elevation of Mangat Ram | 3-day training on Cyber Security Management for officers concludes | Back Issues  
 
news details
Imran Khan's austerity drive fails to impress as govt cars' auction stops in first gear
9/18/2018 12:02:18 PM
ISLAMABAD: Lower-than-expected sales in an auction of Pakistani government vehicles have dealt another early setback to new Prime Minister Imran Khan's populist vow to raise quick revenues through cost-cutting, a campaign that has drawn both praise and ridicule.

The auction on Monday raised about 200 million rupees ($1.6 million), government official Mohammad Asif told local Geo TV. That is just one-tenth of the amount he had predicted, and only 61 of just over 100 vehicles were sold.

The event had been billed as part of Khan`s drive to give "the nation`s wealth to its rightful owners". Critics say most of the measures so far are more symbolism than significant savings
Former cricket star Khan, 65, took office last month after an election campaign in which he railed against what he denounced as corruption and waste by the two main political parties that ruled for than 50 years in between periods of military rule.

Khan promised to cut costs, including trimming motorcades of government officials and selling public land. "It is a change of mindset," he said in a speech on Friday. "I will be counting every single rupee I have to spend on me."

Khan's campaign, however, has been somewhat undercut by his near-daily helicopter commute from his home in the hills surrounding Islamabad.

Critics say the cost-cutting so far has been mostly cosmetic. "There is nothing new in the current austerity drive," said political commentator Raza Rumi.

Auctions of ageing government vehicles, for example, have taken place for years, with less publicity.

Nearly three-quarters of the 101 vehicles on offer on Monday were more than 10 years old. Two were 32-year-old Toyota Corollas. And the total sales indicated little interest for the event`s showcase items - bullet-proof Mercedes estimated at about $1.5 million each.

IDEAS

The auction revenue is dwarfed by the government`s fiscal deficit, projected this year for 1.7 trillion rupees. However, information minister, Fawad Chaudhry, said even symbolic steps were important for building national unity and small savings could add up.

"If you try to see its effect on the GDP, it is small, but in numbers, it is not small," Chaudhry told Reuters.

Pakistan is likely to soon face painful conditions for foreign financing - possibly an International Monetary Fund bailout - to address dwindling foreign currency reserves and a ballooning current account deficit.

Still, reaction to the new government`s austerity drive has been mixed.

When Foreign Minister Shah Mehmood Qureshi announced he would not fly first class, only business class, while abroad, many pointed out this was already the case under the previous government for most trips.

Other early ideas - to cut some 500 staff from Prime Minister House and establish a six-day work week for civil servants - were shelved as unworkable.

HELICOPTER OPTICS

In particular, Khan has been mocked for taking a helicopter into Islamabad most days, after declaring he would eschew luxury perks.

Information Minister Chaudhry argued that the helicopter uses less fuel than a motorcade, saying at one point it cost only 50 rupees (40 cents) per kilometre. That calculation provoked ridicule.
"Why don`t you stop metro bus service and instead let people enjoy the cheap helicopter rides?" quipped a TV host.

In fact, Khan`s helicopter costs about 200,000 rupees ($1,633) per hour factoring in fuel, crew, maintenance and inspections, Syed Naseem Ahmad, president of the Society of Air Safety Investigation Pakistan told Reuters.

Optics aside, analysts say Pakistan will have to take more painful policy cuts in government spending to truly reduce the deficit. The new government on Monday did raise gas prices by 10 to 20 percent.

A further indication of a wider austerity policy is likely to come on Tuesday, when Finance Minister Asad Umar announces revisions to the budget.

There were about 500 attendees at Monday`s auction and some were happy to take the vehicles off the government`s hands.

Nawab Gul bought a 2005 Toyota Altas for 1.25 million rupees ($10,000). "They are saying the national coffers are empty. So, here, have my two cents," Gul said.
  Share This News with Your Friends on Social Network  
  Comment on this Story  
 
 
 
Early Times Android App
STOCK UPDATE
  
BSE Sensex
NSE Nifty
 
CRICKET UPDATE
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
   
Home About Us Top Stories Local News National News Sports News Opinion Editorial ET Cetra Advertise with Us ET E-paper
 
 
J&K RELATED WEBSITES
J&K Govt. Official website
Jammu Kashmir Tourism
JKTDC
Mata Vaishnodevi Shrine Board
Shri Amarnath Ji Shrine Board
Shri Shiv Khori Shrine Board
UTILITY
Train Enquiry
IRCTC
Matavaishnodevi
BSNL
Jammu Kashmir Bank
State Bank of India
PUBLIC INTEREST
Passport Department
Income Tax Department
JK CAMPA
JK GAD
IT Education
Web Site Design Services
EDUCATION
Jammu University
Jammu University Results
JKBOSE
Kashmir University
IGNOU Jammu Center
SMVDU