Wednesday, June 19, 2024

Bureaucrat’s Daughter Received Rs. 720 Million in Salami at Her Wedding

Defense Minister Khawaja Mohammad Asif has made an astonishing assertion, claiming that a Pakistani bureaucrat’s daughter received Rs. 720 million (USD $2.8 million) during her wedding in salaami, the custom of parents, relatives, and guests giving money to the bride and groom.

At the wedding of the first daughter of the same bureaucrat, who he said is a grade 21 public worker, the minister further asserted that a staggering Rs 1.2 billion (USD $4.6 million) in salaam was collected.

The minister’s story before Parliament serves as an illustration of the luxurious lifestyles of the wealthy and powerful, as well as the growing gap between the haves and have-nots in Pakistan, which is plagued by pervasive income and wealth disparity.

The minister’s statement was made as Pakistan struggled with one of the worst economic crises in its history and the International Monetary Fund (IMF) demanded that the country’s wealthy pay greater taxes and remove subsidies in order to restart a delayed $6.5 billion bailout package.

“Chaudhry Pervaiz Elahi personally told me that he went to the wedding of a bureaucrat’s daughter.” “A person from his constituency was collecting salaami,” Asif said during a session of the National Assembly on Friday. Elahi asked him how much he had collected till now, to which he replied, “Rs 720 million and counting.” “He was stuffing the money into a shopping bag,” he told Parliament.

IMF Managing Director Kristalina Georgieva questions why the wealthy can receive subsidies but not pay their fair share of taxes, saying that money taken in from Pakistan’s elites should be used to support those who need it most.

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