Govt to help 5-marla owners build houses: Maryam

She said funds would be provided to people owning up to 5-marla plots to build houses under ‘Apni Chhat Apna Ghar programme’

By Ali Raza
June 14, 2024
Punjab’s Chief Minister-elect Maryam Nawaz can be seen in Punjab Assembly on February 23, 2024. — Facebook/Maryam Nawaz Sharif

LAHORE: The Punjab cabinet Thursday approved Rs5,446 billion largest-ever tax-free surplus budget for FY 2024-25. Punjab Chief Minister Maryam Nawaz, while chairing meeting of the provincial cabinet, said: “Neither new taxes have been imposed nor rate of the existing taxes has been increased in the budget.” She added, “We want to increase financial resources of the province without burdening people. The government has managed 53pc revenue increase through resource mobilisation in the province.” The CM said: “Entire Punjab will be made a ‘safe city’; all cities will be covered with [closed circuit television or CCTV] cameras.”

Advertisement

Maryam said the money saved from not buying wheat would be spent on farmers and cattle-heads would be provided to farmers of south Punjab. “Rural health has never been given special attention. For the first time, all health centres across Punjab are being revamped.”

She said funds would be provided to people owning up to 5-marla plots to build houses under ‘Apni Chhat Apna Ghar programme’. She said a single department would be established to ensure water supply and sanitation in the province.

The cabinet meeting was told the Annual Development Plan (ADP) would include 77 new mega schemes as CM’s special initiatives. The cabinet set a revenue target of Rs960 billion for the current fiscal year against the fiscal year 2023-24 target of Rs625 billion. It was briefed that Rs960 billion revenue target would be achieved by the province through mobilisation of its own resources.

The cabinet approved first-ever record increase of Rs1 billion in the Minority Development Fund, and gave a go-ahead for retiring wheat debt of Rs375 billion to save more than Rs54 billion in interest. The cabinet approved Rs6 billion for laptop scheme, Rs5 billion for PKLI Endowment Fund and Rs130 billion for social protection. During the FY2023-24, Punjab achieved a record increase of Rs110 billion in tax revenue, which is 36pc more than the FBR target. The cabinet approved Rs268 billion in supplementary grants for FY2023-24 budget, besides approval of Supplementary Budget Statement of FY2023-24.

It also approved Rs26 billion for agricultural implements, Rs10 billion for Kisan Card, Rs30 billion for CM Green Tractor Programme, Rs80 billion for CM District SDGs Programme, Rs35 billion for Lahore Development Plan, Rs5 billion for development of Murree, Rs2 billion for livestock card, Rs2 billion for Himat and Nigehban card, and Rs26 billion for restructuring of the school education in Punjab. The cabinet members praised Chief Minister Maryam Nawaz for bringing down record inflation in just three months. She also appreciated the performance of various ministers.

Advertisement