ISLAMABAD: The Ministry of Interior has decided to reopen at least 600 offices of the National Database and Registration Authority and deploy 200 vans to remove hurdles in the biometric verification of people registered with the Ehsaas programme.
The decision was taken after Special Assistant to the Prime Minister on Poverty Alleviation and Social Safety Dr Sania Nishtar requested NADRA offices to be opened for verification of people registered with programme during the meeting of the National Command and Operation Centre (NCOC) on Tuesday.
The meeting chaired by Planning Minister Asad Umar also sought presentation from Utility Stores Corporation Managing Director, National Information Technology Board (NITB) MD, and Minister for Industries and Production Hammad Azhar about the food stocks available at the utility stores, in addition to discussion on the status of mobile stores and epidemic-curve projections.
During the meeting, Nishtar apprised the forum that the Ehsaas programme had served around 5.9 million families across the country, while requesting for help in the checking the veracity of people’s claim via NADRA.
She highlighted that the tax waive-off was being provided to Ehsaas PoS retailers at the federal level
and provincial governments’ compliance was awaited. The provincial chief secretaries informed the forum that the tax waive-off was approved by their cabinets and would be implemented consequently.
The Utility Stores Corporation head informed that due to reduced operating hours there was increase in crowding of masses at the stores. He said the stores were facing increase in the per day demand of flour, sugar, rice and other foods. However, the Corporation was in procurement mode and would procure Rs14 billion worth commodities, he added.
Sindh chief secretary highlighted the shortage of rice and pulses at 56 utility stores in various districts of the province, whereas the chief secretary of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa mentioned that the newly merged districts of the province had very few utility stores.
Minister for National Food and Security Fakhar Imam highlighted that Sindh has procured around 0.5 million tonnes of wheat which was 36 percent of the set target and 46 percent of its harvest. He asked the provincial authorities to keep the ministry updated on the matter.
Minister for Economic Affairs Khusroo Bakhtiar, Minister for Industries and Production Hammad Azhar, SAPM on Health Dr Zafar Mirza, SAPM on National Security Dr Moeed Yusuf, Minister for Interior Brig (r) Ejaz Ahmed Shah, SAPM on Poverty Alleviation and Social Safety Dr Sania Nishtar, the Prime Minister’s Focal person on Anti-Covid-19 Dr Faisal Sultan, National Coordinator NCOC Lieutenant General Hamood Uz Zaman, Chairman NDMA Lieutenant General Muhammad Afzal and others attended the meeting.