Altaf Hamid Rao;
MIRPUR; (Parliament Times): Pakistan Tehreek – e – Insaf, Azad Jammu Kashmir has welcomed Prime Minister Imran Khan’s announcement granting relief in electricity bills for the trade and industrial sector of Azad Jammu Kashmir and Gilgit / Baltistan for a period of three months and payment of the same by the government of Pakistan in the national exchequer.
Welcoming the announcement, the party has described it a tremendous relief and historic step for the business community of AJK and GB in view of sufferings caused by the COVID-19 in the two regions besides rest of the country.
Talking to Parliament Times here on Friday, Central Secretary Information of PTI, AJK, Ershad Mahmud said that the government of Pakistan has already disbursed the colossal compensatory amount of Rs. 1.57 billion among deserving people in a brief 5-week period under the mass Ehsas Emergency Cash Program in Azad Jammu Kashmir. “The recipients of the financial relief under Ehsas Program include 1.26 lakh people belonging to poor, down trodden and economic crises hit classes of the society”, he underlined.
The PTI AJK leader revealed that the federal government was also acting upon an integrated welfare program exclusively for the people of Azad Jammu Kashmir allocating due resources in other public welfare programs. “All of these services were being provided with mere under the spirit of serving masses with all possible facilities of life”, he added.
Ershad continued that the PTI government was helping the needy including down trodden under the Ehsas Welfare Program by taking care of respect and honor of the deserving silently as compared to other political parties without going through the traditional photo-sessions and self-projection.
The PTI AJK leader further disclosed that on the special directives of the federal government, the National Disaster Management Authority ( NDMA) was going to establish 20 new state-of-the-art hospitals in various parts of AJK in the near future in order to meet the medical needs of the people close to their door step – besides to get them rid of the hassle of long traveling to other cities for treatment bearing heavy expenditures, he underlined.
Ershad Mahmud, also the central spokesperson of the PTI AJK, said that the PTI sought that AJK government should also participate in this noble cause sharing from her (AJK Govt.) own resources. He observed that the development funds for the delivery of quality health facilities to AJK people could be doubled if the AJK government move ahead contributing the due share for the uplift of mass health care program devised by the federal government for Azad Jammu Kashmir, he added.
The PTI AJK leader said that according to the reports, the AJK government could not spent the allocated development funds to the volume of Rs. Six billion during the ongoing fiscal year of 2019-20. Lamenting over such situation, Ershad said that apathy of the AJK government should be assessed through the fact that it could not start the construction works of several of major projects despite the announcement made in last year.
Ershad further underlined that since new fiscal year was all set to start from June 1st, non of the approved development projects could be executed in Poonch and Muzaffarabad divisions because of the snow fall during the period from November 2019 to March this year.
The PTI AJK Secy. Info. Emphasized that it was high time for the PML-N – led AJK government to divert the prevailing development funds for the rehabilitation of the suppressed classes of the society meeting their due needs in these hours of trial caused by the pandemic. He suggested immediate grant of relief in tax to the business community besides relief in power bills and disbursement of compensatory relief in form of transfer of cash to the accounts of the common man. He further said that serving masses in tough time was the moral, legal and constitutional duty of the government.
Concluding, Ershad further suggested to the AJK government to adopt austerity drive in offices and residences by following the foot steps of the PTI-led Pakistan government by curtailing the unnecessary expenditures and allocations. He also emphasized for exercising a huge cut in the massive expenditures of the official transport through stopping the misuse of the state-transport through private purposes.