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Imran Khan: new austerity drive for Pakistan

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Imran Khan will forego the lavish lodgings normally used by Pakistan’s prime ministers and live in a three-bedroom house with the use of only two servants rather than hundreds, he said. The newly sworn-in leader used his first address to the nation pledge a new austerity drive and rail against waste as his country faces a severe economic crisis.”

The 65-year-old will live in a three-bed residence normally reserved for the Military Secretary. He also used his televised Sunday evening address to call on the rich to start paying taxes and for Pakistanis living overseas to send their money back to domestic banks to help the country’s foreign currency crisis.

Mr Khan also spoke of his country’s need to tackle poverty, malnutrition and promised to reduce some of the world’s highest maternal death rates and infant mortality rates. He said Pakistan was in severe danger from climate change and spoke about the need to educate the 22.8 million Pakistani children who are out of school.

Meanwhile his new foreign minister said on Monday that he wanted talks with neighbouring India and Afghanistan. Shah Mahmood Qureshi, also stressed that the civilian government would determine foreign policy, potentially putting Mr Khan’s new administration on a collision with the powerful military.

Pakistan’s generals have ruled the country for much of its history and view policy on national security, India and Afghanistan as their realm. Mr Qureshi said that “the foreign policy of Pakistan will be formed here at the foreign office.”

Courtesy: The Telegraph