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Civil-Military Leadership Decides Stringent Action Against Corruption, Smuggling, and Power Theft

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A high-level gathering of civil and military leadership has resolved to take decisive actions against individuals engaged in various illicit activities, including corruption, smuggling, power theft, and involvement in criminal networks.

Chaired by Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif, the meeting focused on devising strategies to combat a range of illegal activities and criminal syndicates. Attended by Chief of Army Staff (COAS) General Syed Asim Munir, federal cabinet members, chief ministers, and senior government officials, the session addressed measures to curb unlawful practices.

Participants were briefed comprehensively on efforts undertaken to tackle criminal networks, smuggling, stockpiling, money laundering, power theft, and the repatriation of illegal immigrants. They recognized the significance of these actions and their positive implications for Pakistan’s economy and the welfare of its people.

The gathering underscored a firm determination to crack down on smugglers, stockpilers, and market manipulators, whose actions have adversely affected the country’s economic trajectory. Immediate relief measures for the general populace were also emphasized.

Key decisions included the approval of agreements between federal and provincial authorities on anti-power theft initiatives, the modernization of power distribution companies (Discos), and the deployment of smart meters to combat power theft effectively. Additionally, strict actions against corrupt officials were mandated.

COAS Munir reiterated the Pakistan Army’s steadfast support for government initiatives aimed at economic recovery.

Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif urged all stakeholders to vigorously pursue initiatives targeting illegal activities and criminal networks within specified timelines.

The federal government, led by the Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) and coalition partners, has been implementing special measures to address gaps draining public resources and negatively impacting the national economy. These efforts are crucial as the country seeks the final tranche of a $1.1 billion loan from the International Monetary Fund (IMF).

In response to IMF requirements, the government is taking steps to enhance the tax collection mechanism, reduce circular debt in the power sector, and adjust electricity and gas tariffs.

Earlier announcements by Premier Shehbaz Sharif included plans for another IMF program, restructuring the tax collection system, and digitizing the Federal Board of Revenue (FBR).

With the nation facing financial challenges, the standby arrangement with the IMF, amounting to $3 billion, is set to expire on April 11. Both parties have reached a staff-level agreement for the disbursement of the final tranche of $1.1 billion, scheduled for next month.

 

 

Hassan Naqvi
Hassan Naqvi
Hassan Naqvi is an award-winning digital, print, and broadcast investigative journalist who is the co-founder of The Scoop. He also hosts his web shows 'The Scoop' and 'The Hassan Naqvi Show'.

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