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June 24, 2019

MPs panel to discuss MNAs’ development schemes


June 24, 2019

ISLAMABAD: A parliamentary panel will discuss on July 2 the development schemes of members of the National Assembly (MNAs) and their approval.

The government has diverted Rs24 billion of the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) and other initiatives for spending on MPs’ recommended development schemes. This amount has been taken from grant number 137, which is related to CPEC and other initiatives. The money has been moved to the Cabinet Division’s grant number 108, which already has an allocation of Rs5 billion.

With this additional Rs24 billion, the total spending on MPs’ schemes has gone up to Rs29 billion. Previously, the Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) government had spent Rs32.6 billion under the Prime Minister’s Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) Achievement Fund. The Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) administration has begun the journey with Rs29 billion spending plan for its first year in power.

Both the PML-N and the PTI have used the name of SDGs to push ahead with their political agendas. The CPEC and other initiatives have a total approved allocation of Rs27 billion and diversion of Rs24 billion suggests that CPEC projects will be affected.

The National Assembly Standing Committee on Energy will also discuss a calling attention notice regarding difficulties being faced by residents of Islamabad due to ban on new electricity and gas connection and metres moved by Ali Nawaz Awan of the PTI. The non-availability of gas transmission line to the NA-24 of the Charsadda district will come under discussion too.

The National Assembly Standing Committee on Privatisation meeting on June 28 will get a briefing on the financial advisors’ report regarding privatisation of Haveli Bahadur Shah and Balloki Power plants and on the report prepared by the Task Force on Energy for privatisation of power distribution companies.

On June 24, the Standing Committee on Defence will take up the issue of General Sales Tax (GST) shares of the Cantonment Boards from Sindh and Balochistan. It will get a briefing on grant-in-aid to these boards which is not being given by the Finance Ministry.

The Inspector General Police (IGP) and Deputy Commissioner of Islamabad will on June 27 brief the Senate Functional Committee on Human Rights and submit a report as discussed in its last session on May 24 on the murder of 10-year old girl Frishta Mohmand in Islamabad.

Besides, the IGP and Intelligence Bureau director general will brief the committee on the

harassment of a senior journalist an English daily in Islamabad and on the surveillance and scrutiny of Rawalpindi based Quetta hotel and cafes. The panel will also be given briefing by the University of Punjab Vice Chancellor regarding the quota of Balochistan students for admission.

The Senate House Committee will be briefed on June 26 by Capital Development Authority (CDA) chairman on the negligence of the organisation in the bidding process of shops at Parliament Lodges with particular reference to unrelated firms in the exercise and illegal issuance of bidding documents on the date of opening of the bids, and on the joint measurement of additional block of Parliament Lodges. The Civil Defence director general will brief the body on the mock drill in Parliament House.

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