Prime Minister Imran Khan on Thursday expressed his disappointment over decision of the Punjab Assembly to raise pays and privileges of MPAs, ministers and especially the chief minister. In a tweet, the prime minister said that such a move could have been justified only once prosperity had returned to Pakistan, but “now when we do not have resources to provide basic amenities to all our people, this is untenable.” The Punjab Assembly on Wednesday enhanced the salaries, perks and privileges of its members to more than double, after enacting the legislation in record haste, within 24 hours of tabling the relevant bill. The unanimously-passed legislation was tabled as a private bill by treasury’s Ghazanfar Abbas Cheema on a private members day on Tuesday. Federal Information Minister Fawad Chaudhry said it appears that the Punjab government is unaware of the austerity policies of the prime minister and the federal government. Otherwise the sham exercise of awarding huge benefits to themselves would not have happened, he added. “Seems Punjab Government and the CM House is in the dark about the PM and the federal Govt austerity policies otherwise such sham exercise of awarding huge benefits to themselves would not have happened…,” he posted on his Twitter handle. Published in Daily Times, March 15th 2019.