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SBP Governor, Hafeez Shaikh not going anywhere: PM Imran

PM Imran Khan. PHOTO: AFP

ISLAMABAD: Prime Minister Imran Khan on Monday made it clear that State Bank of Pakistan (SBP) Governor Reza Baqir and Adviser to the Prime Minister on Finance Abdul Hafeez Shaikh are not leaving their posts, Geo News reported. 

“There is no truth to reports that the Governor SBP and Hafeez Shaikh are leaving,” said PM Imran, according to sources. 

The prime minister chaired a meeting of government and PTI spokespersons at the Prime Minister House to discuss wide-ranging issues such as inflation, unemployment and ministers’ performances. 

FBR Chairman Shabbar Zaidi also became the target of rumours that he was about to be  replaced by the prime minister after he went on an indefinite period of leave on grounds of ill health. 

Last month, it was reported that Chairman FBR Shabbar Zaidi is on an indefinite period of leave from his official duties on grounds of ill health.

Shaikh, in an interview with a private news channel, shared that the government may decide to change the Chairman FBR if he does not recover quickly as the government also plans to introduce a mini-budget.

“The chairman FBR is ill and we hope he recovers quickly,” Shaikh said in the interview.

Earlier, Zaidi had gone on a sick leave from January 6 to January 19. This had led to rumours that there was a rift in the government’s economic team. However, those rumours were rejected by the FBR.

PM Imran vows to take strict action against those responsible for wheat, sugar crisis

Sources said that the prime minister — during the meeting —  vowed to take severe action against those responsible for the wheat and sugar crisis in Pakistan

Last month, PM Imran launched a “grand operation” against those responsible for the wheat crisis that took hold of the country. Wheat flour prices skyrocketed  across Pakistan in January as the staple food was found in scarce quantity. 

The Prime Minister’s Office ordered the provincial governments, chief commissioners, and deputy commissioners (DC) to take stern action against the culprits.

Special Advisor to PM on Information and Broadcasting, Dr Firdous Ashiq Awan, had said that the prime minister had taken steps to bring stability in wheat prices.

A report sent to the prime minister revealed that senior government officials and politicians were involved in creating the wheat crisis. In some parts of the country, officials didn’t increase wheat quota of flour mills to generate the crisis.

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