RAWALPINDI: Prime Minister’s Focal Person for government’s Panagah Programme, Naseem ur Rehman has said that 27 Panagahs were currently operating in the country and government has planned to setup 100 more Panagahs in the country by the end of this year to provide shelter to poor people.
He was addressing business community at the Rawalpindi Chamber of Commerce and Industry (RCCI).
He said that under the proposed plan, a Panagah was planned to be established in each district to provide food and stay facility to poor and needy. He said that we have estimated some data and as per estimate each Panagah incurred an expenditure of Rs600,000, which can be met with the cooperation of well-to-do people of the society, philanthropists etc. He said that government has earmarked Rs6 billion for Panagah Program while our society was spending an amount of Rs.292 billion on charity each year. He also desired that business community should support this initiative of the government, seek guidance to make it sustainable so that poor people could get food and shelter in a respectable manner. He further said that government wanted to provide jobs to the residents of shelter homes and private sector should cooperate in these efforts.
MNA Sajida Zulfiqar who is also part of the delegation, in her address said that government wanted to setup more Panagahs in the country for downtrodden people of society on public-private partnership basis to run these shelter homes on sustainable basis. She said that business community has always supported welfare projects, which was laudable and they should also endorse this initiative of the government as their cooperation was important in running these setups on long-term basis.
RCCI President Saboor Malik on this occasion said that to make this model sustainable, Government must provide a condusive environment and with large business activity these projects can be run successfully. RCCI has inked MOUs with academia and they can be a useful help in designing a successful model. He assured that RCCI would try to support this laudable initiative of the government.
Group Leader Sohail Altaf in his remarks said that this is the right time to negotiate with international banks and countries for rescheduling or waiving loans and debt servicing. The ministry of finance and foreign office should be proactive here, he added.
Salman Aftab, chairman PTI Standing Committee on Accountability & Discipline, office bearers of RCCI, former presidents and members also attended the briefing. Later the delegation paid a visit to RCCI relief activities amid Corona Lock-down and appreciated RCCI role in providing food parcels and packets to the needy.