Tuesday Sep 21, 2021
ISLAMABD: The federal government has said that gifts received by the prime minister of Pakistan from another country are neither advertised nor compared with that of another country.
This was said by Special Assistant to the Prime Minister on Political Communication, Dr Shahbaz Gill, Monday in a tweet. Gill was responding to a debate on social media about the government maintaining secrecy over details of gifts received by PM Imran Khan from other heads of states.
Gill said that releasing lists of gifts and comparing them with those of other countries is considered inappropriate, especially by Islamic countries with whom Pakistan enjoys brotherly relations.
The SAPM said that usually PM Imran Khan deposits such gifts to the Toshakhana, however, if he desires to retain them with him, he has to pay an amount for it.
But he did not elaborate what particular gifts were retained and what were deposited in the Toshakhana.
“During previous tenures, a 15% amount was paid for such gifts; however, during the PTI government, a 50% price of the gift is deposited to the treasury,” he said.
Taking a jibe at past rulers, Gill said that gifts from other countries did not disappear and will not do so during the PTI's tenure.
The government has refused to share information about the PM's gifts and also challenged the order of the Information Commission regarding sharing this information with a citizen.
The Cabinet Division is of the view that release of such details will create unnecessary media hype and news, and it may also impact relations with friendly countries.
Cases are pending in Pakistani courts against former prime ministers and a president including Asif Ali Zardari, Nawaz Sharif and Yusuf Raza Gilani regarding gifts received by them during official tours.
Nawaz Sharif, Asif Ali Zardari and Yusuf Raza Gilani are named in a reference for allegedly obtaining luxury vehicles from the treasury by paying 15% of the actual price.