Karachi, May 25, 2023 (PPI-OT): The provincial cabinet held under the chairmanship of Sindh Chief Minister Syed Murad Ali Shah here at CM House decided to construct 6500 housing units over an area of 248 acres to resettle the affectees of three Nullas in the Malir Development Authority area.
“Party Chairman Bilawal Bhutto has categorically directed his provincial government to resettle the affected people of three main Nullas - Gujjar, Mahmoodabad, and Orangi,” chief minister Murad Ali Shah said and added he has already allocated Rs1 billion for the development of 248 acres the MDA has handed over to the local government. The meeting was held at CM House on Thursday and was attended by provincial ministers, advisors, special assistants, Chief Secretary Sohail Rajput, and others.
Minister Local Government Syed Nasir Shah presented two proposals saying that the affected people of the three nullas may either be given properly developed 80 sq yard plots and a substantial amount to construct their houses or their houses may be constructed by the local government department.
Nasir Shah said that the land measuring 248 acres has already been handed over to the Local Government department by the MDA and the amount of Rs1 billion approved by the Chief Minister was with the local government for development. He added that his department was ready to develop the plots and hand them over to the affected people or construct the houses.
The cabinet discussed the matter thoroughly, and most of them were in favour of constructing 6500 housing units for the affected people as directed by Chairman Bilawal Bhutto. Minister Information Sharjeel Memon said that handing over the plots to the affected people would start real estate business activities in the areas, therefore the houses should be constructed through experienced and well-reputed firms to provide them with respectable accommodation.
The CM directed his Advisor Law Murtaza Wahab and Advocate General to approach the supreme court and get the money of Bahria Town deposited there so that work could be expedited, meanwhile, the local government department must start development of the project by providing them with utility services.
Minister Local Govt Nasir Shah, to a question, told the cabinet that the affected people were being given monthly rent of Rs15000 each which is also an unprecedented initiative of the provincial government. He told the cabinet the project would cost around Rs10 billion, and its PC-I has been approved by the chief ministers.
Houses for flood-affected people: Minister Revenue Makhdoom Mahboobzaman told the cabinet that the houses that collapsed in the recent heavy rains and floods were constructed on government land. He added that the Board of Revenue on the chief minister’s directives carried out an exercise and found that the land of the collapsed houses could be regularized under Gothabad Scheme, Gothabad Housing program, regularization of the village program, and Katchiabadi Act.
The cabinet decided to regularise the houses, as per their category, so that they could be given money for the construction of the house under the ongoing Peoples Housing program. The chief minister directed the chief secretary to issue an order to the concerned DCs to expedite the regularization of the plots at the earliest so that the affected people could be given benefit.
Budget Manual: The Finance dept presented Budget Manual Management (BM). The CM briefing the cabinet said that budgeting was one of the most important functions of the government which spelled out the anticipated expenditures and projected revenues for the next financial year.
To regulate these affairs a budget manual was issued in 1955. However, since then, a number of advancements have taken place in the realm of Public Financial Management, especially relating to the principles, approaches, and types of budgeting in the public sector. In the backdrop, it was found imperative to develop, refine, improve, and update the "Budget Manual" which essentially captures the various dimensions of modern Public Financial Management (PFM) practices including the new techniques of budgeting. The cabinet approved the manual.
Investigation Allowance: The cabinet discussed the proposal of introducing Special Investigation Allowance (SIA) for investigation officers of the police so that proper investigation of the cases, particularly the cases of heinous crime could be made. The chief minister said that the SIA has been proposed for the ranks from ASI to AIG. He added that precedent of the allowance was available in other interrogating agencies such as NAB and ACE-Sindh.
It was pointed out that on average, an IO investigated around 57 criminal cases in a year. The Baluchistan govt (CID) pays a Special Allowance of 40 percent on the minimum pay scale of 2011 subject to a ceiling of Rs. 6000/month. The CM said that the Sindh government intended to lead other provinces to strengthen Police Investigation, and our IG Police rationalized the demand from Rs. 2.519 billion to Rs. 1.979 billion.
The cabinet approved grant of Special Investigation Allowance at one initial pay scale of 2022 to Investigation officers. Its financial impact would be around Rs442.471 million. It was decided that t a certification course would be introduced, and this allowance would be given to certified investigation officers only. The SSP Investigations would exclude the names of those IOs who failed to complete the investigation within a month. The allowance would not be permitted to those officers, who are under suspension or directed to report to SGA and CD, CPO, or Police lines for any disciplinary action, or poor performance.
Teaching License: Minister of Education Syed Sardar Shah briefing the cabinet on the Teaching License Policy said that it was imperative to Improve students’ learning. He added that Pakistan ranked 63rd out of 64 countries in TIMSS (Trends in International Mathematics and Science Studies).
Sardar Shah said that the policy would attract talented youth to teach to build the teaching profession. He disclosed that in the last recruitment test, many applicants could not qualify. All professions, doctors, nurses, lawyers, engineers etc. have licenses that ensured professional accountability, he said.
Minister said that Licenses would be offered in three categories - Primary, Elementary and Secondary and it [licenses] would be offered to new entrants with relevant degrees - Associate Degree in Education (ADE) or B.Ed. It would be optional for in-service teachers with equivalent qualifications and three-year experience. The applicants must clear the test developed and administered by a third party. The teaching license would be renewed after five years.
There would be the Sindh Teacher Education Development Authority (STEDA) sub-committee for issuing teaching licenses. The committee would comprise prominent educationists and experts. The licensing system to have an electronic database synchronized with various education databases and NADRA.
The cabinet approved the Teaching Policy and directed the education dept to recruit 700 EST vacant posts of teachers in BS-16.
Land allotted for power plant: Minister Energy Imtiaz Shaikh told the cabinet that M/s Engro Limited has requested for allotment of 6761 acres of land available in district Thatta for the installation of a 400 MW hybrid Wind Solar Power Project.
The Board of Revenue through DC Thatta has identified the land and fixed its price at Rs570,000 per acre for a period of 30 years lease. The cabinet approved the proposal, and the CM directed the BOR and the Energy department to ensure that there should not be any established village.
Extension of subsidy period: Energy Minister Imtiaz Shaikh presented a request for an extension of the Subsidy period and clarification of tariff differential payments in non-gas committed months under the Sindh Captive Power Plants Subsidy Act, 2017 in the cabinet.
Mr Shaikh said that the Sindh New Captive Power Plants Subsidy Act was promulgated by Sindh Govt. on August 9, 2017. The SNCPP Subsidy Rules were also approved by the Cabinet to carry out the purpose of the Act.
Energy Minister said that the essence of the Act was to provide tariff differential subsidies to local power producers to lessen the gravity of power shortages in the province. The Act was introduced with a limitation of 10 years, out of which any NCPP was allowed with a facility of seven years. He added that the NCPPs, had started claiming subsidies in March 2015, and have exhausted the facility period of 7 years up to 2022.
Imtiaz Shaikh said that his department was of the view that to keep the power shortages limited and the hardships of the investors, their request for an extension in the subsidy period may be considered for Seven Years as per power policy. The cabinet approved the proposal.
The cabinet approved the upgradation of Shaheed Zulfikar Ali Bhutto Institute of Science and Technology (SZABIST) as a university. The cabinet approved a charter for Al-Kawthar University Karachi and the rules of The Sindh Trusts (Amendment) Act-2022. It also approved the salary package and payscale of faculty members of Khairpur Medical College equal to Shaheed Mohtarma Benazir Bhutto Medical College.
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