Government of the Punjab, Finance Department has issued a Notification regarding Austerity / Economic Measures for the finance year 2020-21. The matter was placed before the Standing Committee of the Cabinet on Finance & Development. During the 38th meeting of the standing committee held on 05-08-2020, it was decided mutually by the members of the Committee to approve the austerity measures for the financial year 2020-21 in order to transplant use of public money. Austerity measures are applicable to Government Departments, Lahore High Court, Lahore Local Governments, Public Sector organizations / companies, autonomous institutions, attached departments and special institutions working under the government of the Punjab. Download Regularization Service Act. The detail of the austerity measures has been mentioned as under:-
Placement of Founds in Bank Accounts:-
Unnecessary parking of public funds provided by the Provincial Government from its budgetary allocation in the Commercial bank accounts of Companies, Authorities and Autonomous bodies shall not be allowed. Finance Department will release funds to such entities in relevant SDAs into commercial bank accounts of such entities as per cash flow requirements of entities to avoid unnecessary parking of funds.
There shall be a complete ban on foreign visits of Ministers, Member of Punjab Provincial Assembly and Government officers / officials through Government funding. Cases for foreign visits shall be placed before the Austerity Committee for its recommendations and subsequent approval of the Chief Minister through submission of a Summary. The Provincial Ministers and Civil Servants while undertaking officers/official tours shall travel in “Economy Class” on domestic flights. For international visits, minister shall travel in one class below their entitlement.
There shall a complete ban on treatment abroad at Government’s expense. However, under inevitable situations, approval of the Chief Minister will be required for treatment abroad on government’s expense.
Ban on Purchase of New Vehicles:
There shall be a complete ban on procurement of locally assembled new and imported vehicles out of current and development budgets, under unavoidable circumstances, the vehicles, except listed below, shall be procured with the prior concurrence of the austerity Committee and subsequent approval of Chief Minister through submission of a Summary.
- Ambulances for Hospitals.
- Buses and Coasters for educational institutions.
- Tractors/Trollies, Dumpers, water Bowsers, Fire fighting vehicles, flood relief & rescue equipment (s)/ Vehicles
Ban on Purchase of Air Conditioners:
Air Conditions shall not be allowed to be procured except with the prior approval of the Austerity Committee.
Ban on Furnishing of Houses:-
The earlier withdrawal of furnishing grants allowed to the Provincial Ministers for furnishing their houses and discretionary grants shall remain withdrawn during financial year 2020-21.
Contingent Paid Staff:-
Contingent Paid staff can be hired only in extremely emergent cases according to powers specified in the delegation of Financial Powers Rules, 2016. However, departments shall remain within the budgetary allocations for the purpose under object head “A-1277-Contingent Paid Staff”. Moreover, no additional funds as Supplementary grant shall be provided for this head during financial year 2020-21 and no re-appropriation shall be allowed / made without recommendation of the Austerity Committee.
Ban on Up-gradation of Pots:
There shall be a complete ban on all types of up-gradation of posts except the powers delegated under Delegation of Financial Powers Rules, 2016.
Workshops / Seminars:
There shall be a complete ban on holding workshops / seminars in five star hotels through Government funds.
Advertisement charges for development projects would be met within the project cost only and departments/autonomous bodies shall not charge such expenditure to the non- development budget.
Copy of the Austerity measures have been sent to all departments, organizations and autonomous institutions working under the Government of Punjab. The Punjab Austerity Measure for Financial Year 2020-21 is available to download in PDF form by clicking below.