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Zardari spent Rs1.42bn on 134 foreign tours in his tenure: Shafqat Mehmood    

ISLAMABAD: Federal Minister for Education Shafqat Mehmood on Tuesday said that former president Asif Ali Zadari had spent Rs1.42 bn from the national exchequer on his 134 foreign tours , ARY News reported.    

Addressing a press conference following a federal cabinet meeting with Prime Minister Imran Khan in the chair, Mehmood said that Zardari as president had spent 257 days out of the country. He further said that former prime minister Nawaz Sharif had spent Rs 1.84 bn on his foreign torus.

On the occasion, the minister said that Prime Minister Imran Khan’s upcoming trip to the United States would be the cheapest visit in the country’s history.

Mehmood said that the prime minister would stay in Pakistan’s embassy during his visit to US and added that his security staff, however, would stay at a three star hotel.

The cabinet expressed concerns on the use of national electronic and print media to promote the narrative of convicted persons, the minister said and added that the meeting took notice that in any democracy the use of media for promotion of personal interests or to put national institutions under pressure by convicted criminals or under trial persons was never allowed.

He further said that the cabinet emphasized that the PEMRA should fulfill its responsibilities to discourage such trend.

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The minister said, “Prime Minister Imran Khan directed the Advisor on Finance Dr. Abdul Hafeez Shaikh and Chairman FBR to ensure that prices of essential commodities including flour, ghee and pulses are kept to a reasonable level so that there is no additional burden on people of lower income backgrounds.”

Responding to a question, the minister said that the judge’s purported video was tantamount to attack on the judiciary and added that the burden of proving the video true on Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz.

The cabinet showed concern over the fact that former Federal Minister Khawaja Asif had been a salaried employee of a foreign organization during the time of his minister-ship which was not only against his position but also contravened his oath, he added.

The meeting discussed overall political and economic situation of the country and took various important decisions, the minister said and added that the cabinet offered Fateha for martyred Deputy Collector Customs Abdul Quddus and prayed for his lofty status in the heaven.



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