Cash aid begins for 55,400 flood victims

CM Elahi says Rs12.20bn to be disbursed; Rs2.8 lakh each to owners of 47,500 mud houses

Chief Minister Punjab Chaudhry Parvez Elahi has started the release of relief money for more than 55,000 flood victims.

While addressing the ceremony of distributing relief funds to the flood victims, the CM said that he was also given an opportunity by Allah Almighty and he delivered but did not advertise it like Shehbaz Sharif. “Shehbaz Sharif went to the flood victims, took photos etc and came back. He is very fond of protocol. He is so ‘lucky’ that the officer who shakes hands with him has to quit. What is the use of your government if you don’t help the province or give a good officer?” the chief minister asked.

CM Parvez Elahi added that a total of Rs12.20 billion in aid is being given to 55,400 flood victims. The government is giving 2.8 lakh rupees each to the owners of 47,500 mud houses and 4 lakh rupees each to the owners of 8,000 concrete houses. Valuable work has been done by the armed forces, Akhuwat and religious NGOs for the victims, he noted. “I went to different areas of DG Khan to assess the situation,” he said and added that thousands of houses, mosques and schools were washed away.

He also commended the efforts of officers who lend a helping hand and noted that Sania Nishtar developed a wonderful distribution system in two months. The transparency of the aid program is unprecedented as the record is available on the PDMA system. Meanwhile, World Bank, Asian Development Bank and ambassadors have also praised the aid program.

The CM said that the Ehsaas program is Imran Khan’s plant which is going to become a tree. The work of helping the helpless brings blessings in other works; he added and stated that work equal to one year has been done in three months which would benefit the common man. He said that children were given free education and books before and now they are benefiting from free education till graduation. Three times more stipends would be given than before to the girl students of south Punjab.

“Imran Khan and I did a telethon together and we got ideal funds,” he added. No other person tried to do so as they knew that the public would not give them anything. Imran Khan has a cheque of one billion rupees for Sindh but they have not conducted the survey yet. It could be syphoned off if the aid money is given to Sindh. Don’t know how many days are in power but would continue to serve the people. Allah rewards good intentions. Every day I review what I have done for the people. I try to do the remaining work the next day, he concluded.

Dr Sania Nishtar said that preventing corruption in the Ehsaas program was the biggest challenge. In the past, social protection data was compiled on a political basis. The curse of nepotism and political bias has been eliminated in data entry. The record of every payment will be recorded through CCTV. Chief Secretary Abdullah Sumbal said that a coordinated and transparent aid mechanism has been established through collective efforts. The CM formally launched the program and gave relief funds to the victims of Taunsa, Jampur, Kot Chhata, Rajanpur, and Rojhan at the special BoP counter.

Provincial Ministers Dr Yasmin Rashid, Mian Aslam Iqbal, Sardar Hasnain Bahadur Dreshak, Mohsin Leghari, Umar Sarfaraz Cheema, members of assembly Hafiz Ammar Yasir, PTI leader Jamshed Cheema, secretaries and others were also present.

Also, Chief Minister Elahi has approved a plan to treat breast cancer patients free of cost in Punjab in collaboration with Roche company. A delegation led by managing director Roche Pakistan Ltd Hafsa Shamsie met CM Parvez Elahi at his office and the CM was briefed that the rate of breast cancer is the highest in Pakistan as eight to 10 thousand women are suffering from it.

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