ISLAMABAD: One other Rs13 billion have collected within the Common Providers Fund (USF) account after the federal authorities diverted over Rs50 billion into its kitty in July 2013.
The USF was set as much as promote the event of telecommunication providers in un-served and beneath-served areas all through the nation. Beneath the regulation, telecom operators deposit 1.5pc of their revenues within the USF account.
Nevertheless, the federal government shocked the telecom business by shifting Rs52 billion, devoted to unfold telephony, from the USF account to the Ministry of Finance to repay money owed, particularly to satisfy the power disaster.
Specialists within the telecom business described the transfer as a theft from the telecom business. They feared that the cash in USF account was misplaced perpetually.
“The cash was transferred from the USF account to the Federal Consolidated Fund (FCF) after an modification to the regulation. The federal government can legally use that quantity to satisfy power disaster, schooling or healthcare wants,” Secretary Ministry of Info Know-how Rizwan Bashir informed Daybreak on Wednesday.
He stated the USF cash had been shifted into the general public accounts. The federal government launched the required quantity each time the USF undertook a challenge to unfold telecom providers. At current, bids for rural telecom tasks have been invited to increase providers in Kalat, Khuzdar, Zhob and Mastung.
In accordance with the ministry of IT, in Pishin telecom providers have been put in at a price of Rs175 million in 2010. Equally, Dadu was related at a price of Rs250 million in 2009.
Nevertheless, telecom tasks launched by the current authorities in Zhob value roughly Rs3.6, Kalat Rs2.1 and Sibi roughly Rs3.2 billion in 2015 are but to be accomplished.
Whereas tasks value about Rs20 billion to attach far-flung areas of Pakistan are in progress, Mr Bashir stated the USF had presently sufficient funds to execute all its tasks.
The feedback got here after the Senate committee on issues of much less-developed areas at a gathering on Wednesday sought particulars of the USF accounts of the final three years.
“We consider that the federal government can’t use the USF cash for another function apart from the promotion of telecom providers.
“We have now learnt that the federal government needed to satisfy the round debt from the USF cash which is against the law,” stated the chairman of the committee, Senator Mohammad Usman Khan Kakar of the Pakhtunkhwa Milli Awami Get together (PkMAP).
The committee members, together with Senator Sardar Mohammad Azam Khan Musakhel and Senator Mir Kabeer Ahmed Mohammad Shahi, complained that regardless of such heavy investments to unfold telecom providers within the nation Balochistan was nonetheless the least related province.
“Balochistan is all the time the final to profit from programmes of public welfare,” stated Mr Musakhel.
The chairman of the committee alleged that the ministry of IT had put in telecom towers in chosen places to favour sure influential individuals in Balochistan.
Senator Kakar accused the ministry of IT of discrediting the Baloch individuals by hindering improvement within the province.
“That is false. Instances must be registered towards such parts who stand in the best way of improvement. Like in different provinces, the individuals of Balochistan additionally need progress,” Senator Kakar added.
Revealed in Daybreak, September eighth, 2016
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