LAHORE: Women are directly affected by budget and if the government wants to equal the economic growth it must double the education and health budget and provide employment opportunities for women in all walks of life to improve the domestic economy.
These views were expressed by the participants in the Jang Economic Session on ‘What working and domestic women want in budget 2014-15’, here on Tuesday. The speakers were Dr Musarrat Abid, Uzma Bukhari, Javeria Qais, Shahida Saleem, Dr Aysha Azam, Sajida Mir and Rukhsana Zafar while Sikandar Lodhi hosted the session.
Dr Musarrat Abid said the basic objective of the budget was to resolve the public problems by focusing on them. She said Pakistan was facing poverty, ignorance, unemployment and inflation affecting the people’s life. She said limited taxpayers existed due to the resources scarcity. She called for expanding the tax base on equality basis by improving tax collection system. She demanded allocation for water and power sector projects in the budget. Uzma Bukhari said that the government should have revived economy and brought down the dollar value despite all the economic problems faced in its first year of its tenure. She said broaden the tax base was in the agenda of the government while prioritising the power projects for industrial revival in the country.
Javeria Qais said one government always takes credit of the other government projects. She called for the real economic growth targets while good earning people were also facing problems to meet its ends due to the economic crisis. She said quality health and education was not available to the public and the government should ensure these two basic facilities to them. She called for providing special facilities to widows and the affected women. She demanded for reduction in indirect taxes.
Shahida Saleem said there was a huge difference in domestic and national budget. She said due to lack of domestic resources, the government relied on foreign loans. She believed that peace creation was vital for fresh investment. She said agriculture and other sectors should also be included in tax net to increase revenue generation. Dr Aysha Azam said women were 50 percent of the total population of the country, so employment opportunities should be provided to them. She called for the establishment of day care centres for working women’s children and economic protection to home-based women workers. Sajida Mir said the people were unable to use basic facilities of life due to the escalating inflation. She said the people’s way of living was badly affected due to capitalism which increased the suicide rate during the last few years.
Rukhsana Zafar called for betterment of women workers of agriculture sector. She said agriculture forum should be made for the betterment of agriculture sector and shift 70 percent of domestic electricity needs to solar power.