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- Wednesday, December 26, 2012 - From Print Edition


Says 40,000 students given scholarships; urges students to work for solving


country’s problems; students from other provinces laud Shahbaz


LAHORE: Chief Minister Shahbaz Sharif has said that the key to development and prosperity of the country is with the youth and they will have to come forward to play their role for resolution to problems of the country.


He was talking to position-holder male and female students of Intermediate Examinations from other provinces at Model Town here on Tuesday.


Shahbaz said the Punjab government was pursuing programmes for the welfare of the youth and providing them an honourable status in the society. He said the talented and brilliant students of not only one province but the entire country were sitting present there and the message of such unity had been given by the founder of Quaid-e-Azam whose birthday was being celebrated on Tuesday.


He said that giving respect to the talented students was their right and the Punjab government had openly acknowledged the abilities of the students during last four and a half years.


He said merit had been promoted in every sector due to which Punjab had become a role model for other provinces.


The CM said educational scholarships had been given to 40,000 male and female students through the Punjab Educational Endowment Fund (PEEF), adding that the volume of PEEF had reached Rs 10 billion and Rs 2 billion were being added every year to the fund. He said due to the fund, the poor students were continuing their studies in renowned institutions like LUMS and NUST. He further said that had we started the work 65 years ago, the volume of PEEF would have been Rs150 billion and hundreds of thousands of students would have completed their studies.


Shahbaz Sharif said Quaid-e-Azam had not dreamt such Pakistan where rich and elite should avail all facilities but the poor should be deprived of basic amenities. If Punjab could set up Daanish schools, Educational Endowment Fund, IT university, distribute laptops, launch internship programme, yellow cab and green tractor schemes, why such welfare programme could not be started throughout the country.


He said that despite the worst corruption and nepotism of Islamabad rulers, the Punjab government had started development and welfare projects of billions of rupees and people were benefiting from these projects. He said the real message of birthday of Quaid-e-Azam was to maintain peace in the society and provide the people with equal opportunities of development, socio-economic justice and equality.


The CM said that we had to make a pledge that we would march forward by learning a lesson from the past mistakes, save resources and spend it on the public welfare. He said Pakistan would be made a sovereign and developed country which could hold talks with international community on an equal basis.


Shahbaz said he was proud of being Pakistani and would live and die for Pakistan.


Speaking on the occasion the position holders paid tributes to the CM. A position holder female student from Hyderabad (Sindh) said Shahbaz had provided numerous opportunities to students for polishing their abilities. She said it was an honour for them that today they were sitting with an education-friendly CM of Punjab. Another position-holder male student of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa said the Punjab CM had taken a revolutionary step of setting up Daanish schools where modern educational facilities had been provided.


A female student of Azad Kashmir Board said we could not even think that Punjab government would encourage us so much.


Students from Balochistan and Gilgit-Baltistan said also lauded Shahbaz Sharif.


A student from Balochistan said that despite obtaining position, Balochistan government did not even congratulate him, upon which, he became very much disappointed.


Special Assistant Zaeem Hussain Qadri, Shaista Pervaiz Malik, Secretary Higher Education, high achievers of Sindh, Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, Balochistan, Gilgit-Baltistan, Azad Kashmir and Islamabad boards were present.