ISLAMABAD-Special Assistant to the Prime Minister on Capital Development Authority affairs Ali Nawaz Awan on Saturday said that as a part of the government’s austerity drive, the civic agency had not proposed any increase in its non-development expenditure during budget 2019-20.

The increase in pay and allowances and utility charges will be met from the proposed budgetary provision by adopting austerity measures, he said while addressing a post-budget press conference here at the Convention Centre.

“We are following the austerity being adopted by the Prime Minister as he did not use public funds to run his private residence of Bani Gala”, the SAPM maintained, informing: “Prime Minister paid for the carpeting of a road leading towards his residence at Bani Gala and for its fencing from his own pocket.”

He mentioned that in the upcoming budget, special attention was paid to development works in the city, which were delayed for many years, he said.

He lambasted previous government for neglected the capital and stated that no development work was initiated since 2017 and it was the present government that was going to initiate development work in the city again.He said that CDA would construct underpasses between sectors G-7 and G-8 and sectors F-7 and F-8 to ease the traffic flow in addition to the road carpeting in rest of the city.

He said that the CDA would also construct 7 pedestrian bridges in different parts of the city in addition to reconstruction of an abundant bridge called Burma Bridge.

He said that special attention was being paid to development of new sectors as it was quite necessary in view of the increasing housing needs of the city and budget had been allocated for sector I-15, E-12 and Park Enclave. He accepted inadequacy of human resource of the CDA and reaffirmed that the Planning Wing of the civic body would be completely revamped in coming months.

When questioned as how it will be possible to initiate work on extension of Islamabad Expressway from Koral interchange to G.T Road with nominal allocations in the PSDP, he replied that some structures would be financed by CDA’s own funding.

He however accepted that a permanent water solution for the city was still a distant dream because it needed huge funding but assured that the incumbent government was fully committed and a commercially-viable option would be adopted to end water scarcity in the city.