Meeting to discuss proposals to provide financial assistance to needy artists held in ISB

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ISLAMABAD:   (Parliament Times)   President Dr Arif Alvi Wednesday chaired the 10th meeting of the Steering Committee for Federal Government Artists Welfare Fund to provide financial assistance to the artists, who are in an impoverished position and facing health problems.

The meeting discussed various proposals to help out the extremely deserving and needy artists. It noted that the existing Rs 250 million fund for the welfare of the artists was insufficient to cater to their needs in view of their increasing number and fragile financial condition.

In order to provide financial support to them, it was proposed to enhance the endowment fund from the current Rs 250 million to Rs one billion, a press release issued by the President’s Media Office here said.

The meeting decided to collect a comprehensive data of all artists from across the country and directed the Ministry of Information and Broadcasting to furnish it in a period of one month.

The meeting approved the disbursement of Rs 10 million among the needy artists, who had requested for financial assistance.

It was agreed to grant financial assistance to the widow of an artist for a period of one year after the death of her husband.

The Steering Committee also ratified the investment of Rs 200 million as seed money by the Cabinet Division of the Federal Government Artists Welfare Fund in the National Bank of Pakistan, Main Branch, Civic Center Islamabad.

It may be mentioned here that a fund titled Federal Government Artists Welfare Fund with the seed money of Rs 250 million was created in 2011. The fund is managed by the Steering Committee comprising official and non-official members with the President of Pakistan as chairman.

The meeting was attended by Tariq Najeeb Najmi, Secretary to the President, Safdar Sohail, Special Secretary, Cabinet Division, Akbar Hussain Durrani, Secretary Ministry of Information and Broadcasting, Dr Arshad Mehmood, Additional Finance Secretary as official members and Mrs Misbah Khalid as a non-official member. Whereas Abaseen Yousafzai, Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, Sultan Ali Allana, Sindh, Khalid Anum, Sindh, Adeel Hashmi, Punjab, and Mrs Roshan Khursheed Bharucha participated in the meeting through video conference as non-official members.