The Federal Levies Force play an important role in the security spectrum of Pakistan and must be given full support, this was stated by Chairman Standing Committee on Problems of Less Developed Areas, Senator Usman Khan Kakar, in a meeting on Friday.
Deliberating over the budget for the next financial year, the Committee stressed the need for allocation and disbursement of funds as per requirement of Federal and Provincial Levies Force. The Committee was further informed that a budget of PKR 1.9 billion had been allocated for the 6595 personnel of the Federal Levies Force.
According to Chairman Committee, Senator Usman Khan Kakar Levies Force provides security to 90 percent population of Balochistan, whereas just 10 percent of the populace is covered by the Police. He added that it was sad to observe 90 percent of the annual budget allocated to the police as opposed to a mere 10 percent assigned to the Levies Force. This, he said, barely provides for the Department’s basic needs. While deliberating over the assistance package of employees that died or were injured during service, the Committee recommended that emoluments must be increased as per escalation in dollar rates. Chairman Committee, Senator Usman Khan Kakar said that inflation and other factors must be considered as well.
While evaluating the status of recommendations made in the last meeting, the members were informed that as per Committee directives rules for Federal Levies have submitted to the Balochistan Government for approval, after which these will be submitted to the Functional Committee on Problems of Less Developed Areas within a month.
Minister for State and Frontier Regions (SAFRON), Mr. Shehryar Khan Afridi assured the Committee of the Ministry’s all out support to Levies and Khasadars and called a meeting immediately to discuss all issues pertaining to the Department in detail. He said that keeping in view the recommendations of the Committee this issue will be resolved at the earliest.
Chairman Committee, Senator Usman Khan Kakar recommended that all allocated funds and facilities be disbursed to the Levies Force immediately. Senator Kalsoom Parveen was of the view that details of budget allocation must be provided to the Committee. She said that the Government must take necessary measures for the safety of Levies and Khasadars who serve under extreme tough conditions. Senator Fida Muhammad Khan demanded details of the past five years related to Malakand Levies in the next meeting. He also asked for a list of personnel that were martyred and injured while performing their duties. The Committee demanded similar details of the Levies Force serving in all districts of Balochistan.
The meeting was attended amongst others by Senator Gianchand, Senator Molvi Faiz Muhammad, Senator Fida Muhammad Khan, Senator Agha Shahzaib Durrani, Senator Nighat Mirza, Senator Kalsoom Parveen, Senator Samina Saeed and senior officers from the Ministry of States and Frontier Regions, Ministry of Interior, Ministry of Finance along with all concerned. Minister for State and Frontier Regions (SAFRON), Mr. Shehryar Khan Afridi was also present in the meeting.