Islamabad: Pakistan Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif and his brother have refused a Rs 140 million security wall around their sprawling home estate near Lahore with public funds, saying they will build it with their own money.
The Punjab`s bureaucracy initiated the move hoping that the Sharif brothers will accept the "scandalous proposal" of raising boundary walls, install watch towers and security lights at their private residence at Raiwind Jati Umra on the the outskirts of Lahore, The News daily reported.
Rejecting the proposal of paying from public fund for security-related civil work at their private residence amid terrorist threats to Prime Minister, his brother and Punjab Chief Minister Shahbaz Sharif said they could not show empathy with the common man facing the brunt of terrorism and would bear the construction cost from their own pocket.
Declaring that accepting public fund for this purpose will be a burden on their conscience, he directed the officials to utilise the proposed fund for establishing eight satellite units of the Punjab Forensic Lab as already planned.
Giving his comments on the use of public fund for the civil structure of private residence, Shahbaz noted, "While security of national leadership is of paramount significance, expenditure on permanent civil structures at the family home of the prime minister and chief minister from public exchequer will be a burden on their conscience.
It is not just an issue of propriety alone, rather has to do a lot with a national leader showing empathy with the common man facing the brunt of terrorism and insecurity day in and day out.
"It is equally important to lead by personal example and to create hitherto an unprecedented example of not burdening the fledgling and perpetually constrained public finances even when it comes to personal security consideration".
Besides being a politician, Sharif brothers are also among Pakistan`s biggest industrialists.