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Pak Defence Minister acknowledges country has already gone bankrupt

Sialkot, Feb 18 (IANS) Pakistan’s Defence Minister Khawaja Asif suggested on Saturday that one-fourth of Pakistans debt could be paid off if only two golf clubs built on expensive government land are sold, media reports said.

The minister acknowledged that the country has already gone bankrupt, and that the solution to the country’s problems lies within the country, and not with the International Monetary Fund (IMF), Samaa TV reported.

He also blamed the establishment, bureaucracy, and politicians for the current economic situation.

Asif revealed that he has been in the Parliament for 33 years and had witnessed the country’s politics being disgraced for 32 of those years.

The PML-N leader also pointed out that golf clubs had been built on government land, and that selling two of them would reduce one-fourth of Pakistan’s debt, Samaa TV reported.

Asif also expressed his condolences for the loss of personnel in the fight against terrorism, saying that security agencies are working tirelessly to combat the issue.

He claimed that terrorists were allowed to settle in the country two years ago.

Asif also said that Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif will announce major austerity measures in all government institutions to control the fiscal deficit by minimising government expenditures, The Express Tribune reported.

Meanwhile, the opposition also proposed to the government to take some bold decisions and implement austerity measures to cut its expenditures in order to steer the country out of the economic crisis.

Opposition leader Shahzad Waseem said that the rulers had closed corruption cases involving Rs 1,100 billion and the Pakistani people were bearing the brunt of it. He also expressed fear that the new budgetary measures would stoke inflation, The Express Tribune reported.