As a citizen of a sovereign constitutional democratic country, it is difficult for me to comprehend, how can our PM justify using his discretionary powers to declare family private residences located in UK as temporary PM Camp Offices. After 23 March 1956, when the first constitution was adopted, Pakistan transited from status of Dominion of Pakistan to Islamic Republic of Pakistan and the citizens no longer pledged any oath of loyalty to Her Majesty’s Government as Pakistan achieved the status of an independent sovereign state. Therefore, countries like England cannot represent our state. Is there any precedent during the transition phase from 1947 to 1957 where our Governor General, President, or PM had their camp offices located in any foreign country, or has any other constitutional democracy done so? 

According to government’s own statistics, the total revenue for FY 2016 stands at Rs 4.446 Trillion, while expenditure is Rs 5.7 Trillion, i.e, a deficit of Rs 1.35 Trillion. For a country which relies heavily on foreign aid from countries, the fact that its heads of states and civil and uniformed officers live in palatial houses with scores of servants at their disposal, at the expense of the state, is highly regrettable. 

The US President has to pay for meals consumed by any of his relatives or private guests at the White House, other than those whom he has declared as his dependents. A country facing a terrible financial crunch cannot afford to pay for temporary PM Camp Offices based in London and bear all the expenses incurred just because he chooses to have his medical treatment done at the prestigious Harley Street Clinic. 

It is time sanity prevails and the luxury of numerous private residences, spread over several acres, owned by families of various Presidents, PMs, or CMs, be eradicated. Even Provincial Cabinet meetings are held in Dubai now, with all traveling and lodging expenses 

paid by the government while a prominent political party is headed by British national living in London. 

ALI MALIK TARIQ,  

Lahore, September 9.