Lahore: Though Islamabad is a high rented area for commoners working in the capital city, but some journalists are privileged to get government accommodation at cheaper rents.
According to information placed in the Islamabad High Court and National Assembly, government officers accommodated at Gulshan-e-Jinnah are paying Rs5,000 per month for their family lodge while those working in the non-entitled departments/autonomous bodies are paying Rs6,000 per month.
It was disclosed that at the Federal Lodges a single room to government officers is provided at the rate of Rs 90 per day, family suit Rs 180 per day and FG Chummery Lodge at Rs 60 per day.
Those working in non-entitled departments/autonomous/semi-autonomous bodies but accommodated at the Gulshan-e-Jinnah are paying Rs 110 per day for single room, Rs 220 per day for family suit and Rs75 per day for FG Chummery.
Besides hundreds of top bureaucrats, many journalists working in different media organizations including the official news agency, PTV, PBC and private media icons are also provided official accommodation at cheaper rates.
The journalist accommodated at Gulshan-e-Jinnah are Naveed Miraj, Zahid Jhangvi,Aaj TV anchor Mushtaq Minhas, Sameer Ahmed, Rao Khalid Mehmood, Malik Manzoor, Tariq Mehmood Summair, Bureau Chief Express News Islamabad Amir Ilyas Rana, Sajjad Tareen from Nawa-i-Waqt , Zahid Mehmood Malik, Bureau Chief ARY Islamabad Sabir Shakir, Wajid Rasool, Khizar Hayat Klasra is a brother of Rauf Klasra who gives lecture on honesty daily on television screen but can’t ask his brother to leave the possession of a govt flat , Bureau Chief Capital News Islamabad Mazhar Tufail,Director News Rose TV Waheed Hussain and Javaid Baloch from Nai Baat.
The present government allotted family lodges to three journalists Sajjad Tareen, Khizar Klasra and Sabir Shakir while the other journalists got allotments during the previous government. Syed Mohsin Raza and Syed Mujtaba Rizwan, both working with daily Assas, are accommodated at Shah Abdul Latif Bhattai Lodges.
A top housing ministry official confirmed that there was no rule whatsoever for the allotment of flats in Gulshan-e-Jinnah to journalists. “Allotments made to a number of journalists in Gulshan-e-Jinnah are without support of any rules,” the official said adding “All these allotments to journalists were made on recommendations of the government top guns.”