Nation can’t prosper with ‘island of rich amidst sea of poor’: PM

Nation can't prosper with 'island of rich amidst sea of poor': PM

Nation can't prosper with 'island of rich amidst sea of poor': PMRAIWIND, May 5 (APP): Prime Minister Imran Khan on Thursday said the government was focusing on equitable distribution of resources to rich and poor by ensuring basic amenities of life for all.

“The notion of ‘elite capture and the prevailing mindset that Pakistan belongs to a particular class only is regrettable,” he said in his address at the launch of Punjab peri-urban housing project for low-income groups.

Imran Khan said no nation could prosper with ‘an island of rich and a big sea of poor’ and regretted that during last 74 years, only a particular elite ruled the country.

He said the elite-centric policies inflicted huge damage upon the poor whose access to civic facilities including health, education and jobs greatly suffered.

The prime minister said his vision was to make powerful answerable to law and strengthen the weaker segments of society.

He said Islam’s first socio-welfare State of Medina was a model to be emulated where rule of law and justice prevailed regardless of the status of a person.

He pointed that the Opposition wanted an NRO (deal) from him to spare their corruption, however, said that such efforts would go in vain.

He said the political elite in the past patronized illegal land grabbing that led to litigation and obstructed development work.

Imran Khan said the government had launched several affordable housing schemes for low-income groups, adding that the construction industry was resulting in an economic boom in the country.

As the construction sector was connected with 30 other industries, he said, the step would help resolve the problems of accommodation and unemployment.

He mentioned that the recently cleared foreclosure law of banks greatly helped in materializing the low-cost housing schemes.

The prime minister said the ill-planning of infrastructure and encroachment in cities was leading to civic problems including poor sanitation, pollution and mushroom growth of slums.

He said a plan to equip slums with basic amenities was on cards and vowed to give ownership rights to the slum-dwellers.

The prime minister, who also virtually inaugurated the work at nine other sites including Chiniot, Dera Ghazi Khan, Chunian, Khanewal, Khushab, Mandi Bahauddin, Mianwali, Jalalpur Pirwalla and Sargodha, said the project would facilitate the common man.

He lauded Frontier Works Organization and the government of Punjab for executing the work on low-cost housing in record time.

Imran Khan said Pakistan was blessed with areas having spectacular natural beauty, adding that proper tourism strategy could earn the country huge revenues.

He said the government was focused on bringing a revolution in the agriculture sector and mentioned that he was personally overseeing the area to facilitate farmers.

He said during last two years, the farmers were given an additional payment of Rs 11 billion and the yields of wheat, rice and corn witnessed a record production.

The prime minister mentioned that Pakistan was also undergoing development in information technology with record exports of equipment in 11 years.

On COVID-19, the prime minister appealed to the public to observe Standard Operating Procedures to contain the dangerous wave of pandemic and stressed to continue the use of face mask as a crucial precaution.

“The next two weeks are very significant and our target is to bring down the coronavirus cases,” he said, adding that the situation in India was a lesson to learn from.

Chief Minister Sardar Usman Buzdar said in the first phase, over one million houses would be constructed and the project would later be expanded to the tehsil level.

He said the Punjab government would extend Rs 0.3 million subsidies on each house to low-income groups.

Earlier, Prime Minister Imran Khan launched Punjab peri-urban low-cost housing scheme project at Raiwind to be built at 10 sites to facilitate low-income groups living in smaller cities and rural areas of the province.

The project is being finalized in collaboration with the Government of Punjab and Naya Pakistan Housing and Development Authority.

The residential colonies consisting of 100 to 500 housing units will be constructed in the suburbs of cities and rural areas of the province. The land for this purpose will be provided through the Board of Revenue Punjab at an affordable price.

The project is being finalized in collaboration with the Government of Punjab and Naya Pakistan Housing and Development Authority.


By Shumaila Andleeb

Shumaila Andleeb; Senior Reporter at Associated Press of Pakistan; covering the beats of President, Prime Minister, Foreign Office, and Special Assignments.

APP Services