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    Rabindra

    This is a very candid article on the Defence Budget of our Western neighbour , albeit inimical since 1947. It highlights the ‘India centric’ obsession of Pakistan , an obsession which translates into Rs 1.15 trillion expenditure at 2.62 of its total GDP.
    Though a nominal increase YOY, with in the Budget, the expenditure on purchase of Arms and Ammunition will see a 11.78 % growth. This may include purchase of Russian S 300 Strategic Air Defence system and Mi 35 attack helicopters,purchase of both of which were discussed between Pakistan and Russia in the recently concluded SCO meet at Bishkek.

    Pakistan is a Nation beset with all the problems of Third world .Burgeoning population at 21.6 bn and increasing at 1.9 %, unemployment at 5.9 % and a age quotient of over 60 % population between 16- 41 years, mostly semi literate, today is the biggest challenge for Pakistan. CPEC was expected to provide 1.2 million jobs by 2030 9 revised to 7 lakhs in some estimates) has so far claimed to have generated only 75000 jobs.
    Stagnant agriculture, falling exports, depreciation of currency by 3.6 % over last five months and Rupee pegged at 146.52 per US Dollar , has generated inflation of 8.89 %.
    All this is plus the rising expenditure on Crude import (despite Payment waiver clauses extended by Saudi Arabia and UAE) is creating turmoil in Pakistan economy, forcing the valiant proud Pathan to go from country to country , asking for dole. If only he had the wisdom to just cross eastwards and ask for financial support on the strength of commitment of creating peace henceforth by giving up its illegal claims on J&K and of downsizing Pakistan Armed Forces and their role in Pakistan ,India would have readily agreed and South Asia and the entire world would have heaved a sigh of huge relief.

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