The official Twitter handle of Pakistan’s Embassy in Serbia on Friday chastised the Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) administration for record-breaking inflation and alleged non-payment of salaries in recent months.

However, a post from a Foreign Office official said that the country’s Belgrade mission’s Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram accounts had been “hacked.”

Prime Minister Imran Khan was referenced in the tweet by the embassy’s verified account, who asked how long he expects government officials to remain silent in the face of hyperinflation. “Is this Naya Pakistan?” inquired the tweet.

Imran’s perennial line ‘ghabrana nahi hai’ was mocked in the tweet, that included a spoof song.

The embassy’s official account apologized in a second tweet, saying that they were left with no choice than to vent their concerns in a public arena.

Dr Arslan Khalid, the PM’s digital media advisor, also alleged the account was “hacked” in response to the embassy’s post. The news came from the Foreign Office, he said.

The Foreign Office is conducting an investigation, according to the focal person.

Record-high inflation

Due to the government’s administrative actions combined with significant currency depreciation, inflation soared to 11.5 percent in November 2021, the highest rate in 21 months, making food, power, and transportation expensive for the common people.

On a month-to-month basis, the Consumer Price Index (CPI) increased by 3%, the highest monthly reading in the last 13-and-a-half years, indicating a significant price increase.

The central bank raised the interest rate by 1.5 percentage point to 8.75 percent last week, with predictions that the rate will rise much higher at the next monetary policy meeting, which the State Bank of Pakistan would hold on December 14.

Worryingly, the Wholesale Price Index (WPI) increased by 27% in November, implying that prices will stay high in the months ahead.

The increase in the WPI was mostly due to price increases in textile and clothing, metal items, transportation goods, food, drinks, and leather products.

Meanwhile, analysts have cautioned that the International Monetary Fund’s (IMF) previous measures would drive inflation into double digits, but Pakistan must make painful decisions regarding spending cuts and the civilian-military workforce size.

The story was filed by the News Desk.
The Desk can be reached at info@thecorrespondent.com.pk.

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