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LAHORE: The Punjab government has convened an inter-provincial local bodies meeting to discuss the pros and cons of the local government system 2013-18 viz-a-viz to discuss new set-up being introduced in Punjab.

All the four provinces’ local bodies ministers and administrative secretaries as well as a representative of the federal government are expected to attend the meeting scheduled for Jan 17.

Punjab Senior Minister Aleem Khan says the proposed recommendations will be discussed in the inter-provincial meeting. For the first time in Punjab, he said, the concept of village councils and neighbourhood councils was being introduced to ensure masses’ representation at local level. He said a new system of local bodies in Punjab would bring about revolution in all 25,000 villages as development would start with due participation of local people.

After detailed discussion and recommendations of the inter-provincial meeting, he said, a people-friendly local government system would be introduced in Punjab.

“The new bill [of local bodies] is in its final stage and can be tabled any time in Punjab Assembly,” he said.

The Punjab local government department would host the Jan 17 inter-provincial meeting with the coordination of the UNDP and GTZ, a German body.

Punjab Local Government Director General Mahmood Javed Bhatti has been nominated as focal person for the meeting, which will be held at 90 Shahra-i-Quaid -i-Azam.

Published in Dawn, January 11th, 2019