Housewives have always found it difficult to manage the limited amount that they get to run their houses efficiently. The brunt of price hike always falls on housewives as they juggle between house management and budgeting.
Despite the fact that the government initiates different schemes to give relief to the poor by offering subsidies, women have to manage food rations, daily expenditures, school fees of their children, transportation charges, rent of the house and taxes in a limited amount.
When asked about the budget presented by Finance Minister Syed Naveed Qamar on Wednesday, most housewives criticised the price hike, which they said, has made their lives miserable. They said that it is very difficult for them to manage their houses.
Martha Masih, a domestic servant, whose husband is a painter, criticised the budget. She said “Budget or no budget, we are more interested in prices of items of daily use. “We want ‘atta,’ sugar and rice at affordable prices, everything else is secondary. We never thought that feeding ourselves would become so difficult. People who work on daily basis face a real problem when they don’t get work and have to rely on small loans,” she said.
She said that a woman dreams about having her own house, but it seems that our dream would remain a dream forever and it would never materialise. “We can’t save even a single rupee as whatever me and my husband earn is immediately consumed on food, house rent, school fees and utility bills in the first week of the month. We ask our employers to give us advance for the rest of the month. In monsoon season, my husband sits idle at home because people avoid renovating or painting their houses because of rains. The whole financial pressure falls on my shoulders that I have to bear,” she said.
Rukhsana Begum, a teacher working in a private school, said that she is educating her children well so that they could stand on their feet. She said that good education is quite expensive and it is hard for her and her husband to make both ends meet. According to her, she has been working in school and trying to manage her finances.
“The government employees get raise in their salaries annually but what about us we have to manage our homes in a fixed salary year after year. Do you think pay raise of Rs1,000 to Rs2,000 annually is enough for us? Our budget gets disturbed in a day if a family member gets sick. The medical bills take away all our money,” she said.
Subhana Mansoor, a housewife, said that increase in prices of petrol and diesel has confined her family to the four walls of their house. “We don’t go out as we used to do earlier, visit our family or go for shopping. Now we plan for targetted shopping and limit our expenses. Entertainment has become quite expensive. The tuition fees of private universities have gone up in thousands and it’s really difficult for us. Traders increase prices and there is no check and balance in this regard,” she told ‘The News.’
Courtesy: The News, 12/6/2008