KARACHI: (Atab Channa) While the atrocities and violation of the 18th Constitutional Amendment is continued, Pakistan’s federal government has released a total of Rs 459 million against the approved budget of Rs 3.427 billion to Sindh government’s Workers Welfare Board depriving the laborers from fundamental rights, Sindh Post has learnt.

Prior to the devolution, the Federal Board of Revenue was collecting six percent of the salary out of which 5 percent from the employers and the one percent from the employees, and hence secured the workers, sources said.

The Federal Board of Revenue (FBR) collects the amount and forward to the Ministry of Finance and the provinces are supposed to furnish schemes aimed at welfare of the laborers and the amount used to be transferred to provincial governments.

“By virtue of 18th Amendment in the Constitution of Islamic Republic of Pakistan, the concurrent list has been abolished and all the subjects enumerated in the said list have been devolved to provinces. The Sindh Assembly has passed Act namely “The Sindh Workers Welfare Fund Act, 2014 and this Act has repealed Workers Welfare Fund Ordinance, 1971 to the extent of province of Sindh”, according to a letter.

However, in the year 2016-17, the Ministry of Overseas Pakistanis and Human Resource Development, Government of Pakistan had approved Rs 3.427 billion for the workers welfare board however in the whole year the Sindh province only received Rs 459 million which is sheer injustice with the maximum revenue generating province, sources told Sind Post.

In this connection, the Labour and Human Resource Department of the Government of Sindh has time and again requested to federal authorities to release the funds however no heed has so far been paid. Moreover, the Labour and Human Resources Department has forwarded a letter No L-II-21-59/2010-II with a request to release the funds at the earliest as the uplift project meant for the welfare of labourers are suffering a lot.

“It reveals that against the approved budget of Rs 3.427 billion during financial year 2016-17, meager amount of Rs 459 million was released with the result that Sindh Workers Welfare Board did not complete ongoing development schemes within the stipulated period.

It is necessary to mention that during the meeting of HR department, Government of Sindh raised the issue that all other provinces have been released their entire budgetary allocation, whereas only first quarter has been released to Workers Welfare Board Sindh”, says the official letter exclusively available with Sindh Post.

The government of Sindh’s Secretary Labour and Human Resources, Abdul Rasheed Solangi, told Sindh Post that a formal request was sent to the ministry of Overseas Pakistanis and Human Resource Development to release the remaining funds of Rs 2968.728 million against the approved budget of Rs 3.427 billion. “The release of funds will help complete the ongoing development projects within the stipulated time”, the secretary added.