CM approves package to provide relief to the masses


-Eatables including flour, sugar, eggs, chicken, ghee, oil to be provided on subsidised, discounted rates in Ramzan Bazaars

-minimum wage of skilled/unskilled workers to be increased

LAHORE: Punjab Chief Minister (CM) Sardar Usman Buzdar on Wednesday gave the approval to decrease the length of service from four years to three years for regularising contractual employees, a decision which would be equally implemented in all the departments in Punjab.

He was presiding over the 9th meeting of the provincial cabinet at his office here on Wednesday.

The meeting also decided to give a colossal subsidy to the tune of billions of rupees under Ramzan Package, 2019. Agri fair price shops will be set up in 309 Ramzan Bazaars to provide eatables on subsidised rates and Rs80 subsidy will be given on a 10kg flour bag which will be sold at Rs290 in Ramzan Bazaars.

Similarly, sugar will be sold at Rs55 per kg, eggs will be available at a discount of Rs5 per dozen, chicken meat will be sold at a discount of Rs10 as compared to the market and Rs15 to Rs20 per kg discount will be made in the price of ghee and oil. Ramzan Bazaars will start at the last week of Sha’ban and two thousand daster khawans will be set up during Ramzan-ul-Mubarak.

The meeting decided to increase the number of 968 price-control magistrates in the province while a price-application has also been prepared for the monitoring of prices. It was also decided that Ramzan Bazaars will function as Eid Bazaars during the last ten days of Ramzan to sell Eid related items.

The chief minister directed to ensure strict monitoring of steps taken under Ramzan Package adding that ministers, advisors and secretaries will monitor the Ramzan Bazaars and further said that he will also check such bazaars.

He also directed to initiate indiscriminate action against hoarders and illegal profiteers and made it clear that the administration should initiate strict action against those responsible for creating artificial price-hikes. “Jail is the best place for such elements,” he added.

He said that effective measures should be taken to stabilise the sugar prices and line departments should ensure it in collaboration with the Pakistan Sugar Mills Association (PSMA) and added that the government will go to every extent to give the common man a substantial relief to ensure that hoarding and price-hikes are not allowed during Ramzan.

Further, the meeting gave approval to granting technical allowance to the engineers of different provincial departments who are registered with the Pakistan Engineering Council (PEC).

The meeting also decided to increase the minimum wage of skilled/unskilled workers along with the approval of Punjab Growth Strategy, 2023.

The meeting approved to set up workers welfare fund in Punjab along with the approval of settlement agreement relating to Rawalpindi Institute of Cardiology.

Annual audit and performance report for 2015-16 of Punjab Judicial Academy was also presented before the meeting and the cabinet decided to table it before the Punjab Assembly.

Moreover, the meeting gave approval to amendment in Punjab Private Educational Institutions (Promotion and Regulation) Rules, 1984 to set up a registration authority.

The meeting also gave approval to the draft of amendments in Punjab Health Foundation Act 2018. Under it, the scope of PHF will be increased and the chairman will be elected from board members to make it a vibrant organisation.

The management and administrative plan of the Punjab government with regard to gaining the administrative control of some educational institutions and seminaries on the directions of the federal government was given approval.

The decision of giving 60 days remission to the prisoners confined in provincial jails was given approval as well. However, this decision will not apply to the prisoners sentenced under heinous crimes, espionage, activities against the State and terrorism.