LAHORE So far three days of the general discussion on the Punjab budget have elapsed, and only one thing is crystal clear that the document is to be praised by the treasury while the opposition is supposed to criticise the government for presenting a poor fiscal outlay. In addition to staying away from the topic, the legislators from both sides of the political divide mainly indulged in levelling allegations, counter allegations and defence of party leadership, thus not contributing positively for addressing public problems and real issues. In the same vein, there is visible lack of interest of the worthy members, since most of them leave the floor after taking their turn without listening to other speakers, thus making attendance thinner with the passage of time. The treasury legislators termed the proposed allocation poor friendly, saying that it was the best under the prevailing circumstances. The opposition, however, has different point of view. The opposition legislators said that the budget was gimmickry of words and against the interests of the masses. Taking part in the budget debate at the Punjab Assembly floor on Wednesday, PPP parliamentary leader Zulfiqar Gondal suggested that the treasury should make Kamran Michael full time finance minister as he fulfilled the criterion of holding such a portfolio on permanent basis. He said that dictator Zia-ul-Haq has left but Taliban mind set continued to damage the country. He said that remnants of Zia were ruling the province. He said that it was moral obligation of the provincial government to take vote of confidence after lifting of the Governors rule. He said that the Punjab government started food stamp scheme on the pattern of Benazir Income Support Programme but it was not clear that why this scheme had been shelved. Treasury legislator Rana Afzal said that putting hurdles in the construction of Kalabagh Dam was also tyranny and terrorism. He said that terrorists attack few individuals but those opposing Kalabagh Dam were damaging the country. He said that Pakistan was frontline state in the war on terror but the US was not allowing installation of nuclear power plant. PML-Q legislator Amir Sultan Cheema said that the budget was gimmickry of words and patchwork and reflective of lack of economic policy and vision. He said that the present rulers had converted surplus budget of previous regime to a deficit budget by adopting wrong policies. He said that there was stark contradiction in the claims of the rulers regarding foreign loans and on ground realities. He said that there were a number of projects in the budget documents that would be executed through foreign funding. He said that bloc allocation for projects was a joke with the elected representatives and the masses. PML-N member Sana Ullah Khan Mastikhel said that the budget was best under the present circumstances and the opposition was befooling the masses by criticising the proposed allocations. He said that the PML-N would not reject saraki province if it was demanded by the masses. He said that PML-N Quaid Nawaz Sharif had already made it clear that new provinces could be established on administrative grounds. Opposition MPA Abdul Rehman Rana said that prices of essential commodities, utility bills and loadshedding had increased considerably during the last three years. He stressed upon the need of rising above the party affiliation and taking measures to give relief to the masses. Treasury member Rana Muhammad Arshad said that the party that contested election on the slogan of roti, kapra and makan has given gifts of gas and electricity loadshedding. He said that if the rulers in the federal capital failed to correct wrongs, public would hold them accountable in the next elections.