Just as Shahbaz Sharif was beginning to drop from the headlines after asking Taliban to ‘spare Punjab,’ the Pubjab Chief Minister finds himself again in trouble as new reports surface around a Rs1.06 billion irregularity in expenditures for the Shahbaz Sharif’s ‘Sasti Roti’ (cheap bread) scheme.
Shahbaz Sharif found himself in hot water recently after it became known that he had requested Taliban for a ‘separate peace’ for Punjab. Sharif has been trying to temper the reaction to his statements by claiming that he was quoted out of context. But it seems that his problems are only just beginning.
The News reports today that, “The much touted Sasti Roti (cheap bread) scheme of the Punjab’s “Khadim-e-Aala” (chief minister) has caused irregular expenditure of Rs1.06 billion from the national kitty…”
The Punjab Food Department has conducted financial irregularities of Rs514.914 billion in non-budgetary and other matters in FY2008-09 while it also did not settle paras of Rs60 million of the last financial year.
The observations are largely related to Chief Minister’s major schemes that include of Sasti Roti, irregular expenditures on budgetary and non-budgetary items, purchase of jute bags at higher rates and higher wheat transportation contracts to the favourite parties are some of major financial irregularities of the Food Department.
Last week a blogger had sent around an email requesting people to call PML-N head office and demand that Shahbaz Sharif be removed as CM. With other news taking over the headlines, Sharif seemed to have weathered the storm. Now there are new reports of billions of Rupees missing from irregular expenditures related to one of the CM’s key programmes, and his career in politics seems jeapordized once again.
What do you think? Should Shahbaz Sharif stay or go as Punjab Chief Minister?