PM announces welfare programme; hints at pricey petrol, gas shortage

ISLAMABAD: Prime Minister Imran Khan Wednesday announced a historical mega welfare programme of Rs1400 billion for four million families and hinted at increasing petrol prices and load shedding of gas in the winter.

The PM addressed the nation and said that they would give a 30 per cent subsidy on the Ghee (oil), Aata (flour) and Daal (pulses) under the relief programme.

He said under the government’s Kamyab Pakistan Program, they would provide interest-free loans to 40 lac families to construct their houses and five lac loan to the farmers.

The PM also announced that under the Kamyab Pakistan Program, they would also give a stipend to 6 million students. He said they would provide health insurance cards in Islamabad and Punjab in the next two months.

PM Imran said petrol prices were less than other countries in Pakistan so it was necessary for his government to increase it to meet the financial necessities.

The government launched its welfare programme at a time when the country is facing the worst inflation in history and the opposition parties have launched a mass movement against the government over the issue.

PM Khan before announcing the programme praised the Ehsas Programme team for combining data in three that is helping the government now to announce its welfare programme for the people in the low strata of the economy by giving them relief and subsidies.

He said they inherited the government with a huge loan burden and all the economic indicators were negative. He said they rescued the country from going into bankruptcy with the help of friendly countries including China and Saudi Arabia.

He later discussed the impact of the coronavirus epidemic and how his government’s steps helped the country to get through this difficult phase without suffering major losses.

The PM said the Economist magazine had declared Pakistan a top third country in the world that performed well to deal with the coronavirus epidemic.

PM Imran said Pakistan just used 8 billion dollars for its financial recovery while the US spent 4000 billion dollars to come back from the corona crisis.

Imran said different sectors including textile, and IT gained heavy profits due to the government’s economic policies. So, he appealed to the industrialists that they should increase the salaries of their staff.

He appealed to the media that it should play its balanced role and informed the masses that either only the government’ policies were the reason for increasing inflation in the country or it was actually a trend of the globe after the corona effect.

The PM said Bloomberg reported that the prices of commodities had been increased 50 per cent internationally but inflation in Pakistan was just 9 per cent.

PM’s address to the nation was around 25 minutes long and mostly covered the issues of high inflation, petrol prices, gas shortage, different relief packages for masses including the Ehsas and Kamyab Pakistan Programmes. TF Report

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