The Sindh cabinet’s recent decisions to approve funds for the Rangers and repairs of school buildings demonstrate a pragmatic and balanced approach to resource allocation amidst financial constraints and upcoming general elections. The approval of Rs357 million for strengthening the Rangers’ operational capacity prioritises essential expenditures, while the allocation of Rs3.3 billion for repairing school buildings to be used as polling stations highlights the importance of a smooth electoral process.
The minimal allocation of funds for the Rangers against a summary of Rs2 billion by the department reflects Sindh’s caretaker government’s rational approach amid the economic crunch. The Rangers’ enhanced operational capacity is necessary to equip them to address potential security challenges, particularly during the crucial period of general elections in the country in February of the upcoming year. Rangers are going to play a crucial role in maintaining law and order across the province during this time specifically.
Furthermore, the cabinet’s approval of funds for school building repairs underscores the importance of creating suitable polling environments for elections. The renovation of 9,900 school buildings will ensure accessibility for voters and enhance civic participation, contributing to a credible and inclusive electoral process – something which Pakistan needs the most to ensure political stability for the next election term.
Concerns regarding the education department’s inefficiency and bad track record are valid as the Sindh education department is known for corruption, ghost schools, and ghost teachers. It is, therefore, very important that a fair use of these allocated funds is supervised by competent and honest people. The Sindh government must oversee the renovation and not let the funds be wasted due to corruption and other malpractices.
Conducting elections amidst a national economic crunch is a big challenge in itself. The careful and thoughtful allocation of funds by the Sindh Cabinet reflects consideration for these tough realities. Now, a careful expenditure of these funds will further help in achieving the targets. Prioritising public safety and security as well as ensuring the polling stations are accessible and comfortable, Sindh has set good precedence and shown commitment to a smooth electoral process.