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Pak military provided Rs 110 billion more than bud estimates

world Updated: Jun 09, 2010 15:05 IST

Pakistan is planning to buy more fighter jets, surveillance planes and submarines and the nation's military has been allocated billions of rupees over and above the defence budget for making such high-end weapon purchases.

A part of the special funding for the defence will also go to provide more sophisticated weapons to the military for undertaking counter insurgency operations against Taliban militants in the country's restive north west.

Islamabad last week hiked defence spending for 2010-11 to Rs 442.2 billion ($ 5.18 billion) up from Rs 342.9 billion allocated in the last fiscal.

Besides the defence budget of Rs 442.2 billion for 2010-11, the government has allocated Rs 110 billion out of budget estimates for the Armed Forces Development Plan, ongoing anti-militancy operations and a key defence initiative, official sources were quoted as saying by the Daily Times.

The aim of this initiative is to enable the military to acquire fighter jets and surveillance aircraft, submarines and other weapons and technology to effectively counter external threats and terrorism.

Pakistan recently received upgraded F-16 fighter jets, P-3C Orion maritime reconnaissance and helicopter gunships from the US. But under new plans Islamabad wants to buy more submarines and other weapon systems.

Last year too, the government on the insistence of the military also provided an additional Rs 49 billion to meet the expenses of anti-militancy operations.

But now a whopping Rs 110 billion is being provided for military.

Media reports said, a sum of Rs 60 billion has been reserved for the Armed Forces Development Plan, which is aimed at equipping the armed forces with the latest technology and weapon systems. Islamabad has been reserving funds for the Armed Forces Development Plan for the past few years and the average annual allocation has been about Rs 100 billion.