Punjab unveils Rs10bn relief package for daily-wage earners

Published March 29, 2020
“The Punjab government is standing with the people who have lost their livelihoods in the wake of the coronavirus scourge,” said Chief Minister Usman Buzdar. — DawnNewsTV/File
“The Punjab government is standing with the people who have lost their livelihoods in the wake of the coronavirus scourge,” said Chief Minister Usman Buzdar. — DawnNewsTV/File

LAHORE: Punjab Chief Minister Usman Buzdar on Saturday announced a Rs10 billion relief package for financial support of 2.5 million families of daily-wage earners in addition to the financial support packages announced by the federal government. Each family will be given Rs4,000 financial assistance.

“The Punjab government is standing with the people who have lost their livelihoods in the wake of the coronavirus scourge,” he said.

Announcing the relief package during a press conference at the Chief Minister’s Secretariat, he said the Punjab government had also decided to remove provincial taxes to the tune of Rs18bn as the nation was going through testing times in the wake of the threat from the virus.

The chief minister announced offering Shuhada Package to doctors and other health professionals who lose their lives in the line of duty while serving coronavirus patients in health facilities across the province.

Hailing doctors, nurses, paramedics and other health professionals as heroes, the chief minister said the government had also decided to give one-month additional salary to them in recognition of their services in the war against coronavirus. The additional salary would be given under the head of “Special Risk Allowance”, he said.

CM says provincial taxes to tune of Rs18bn will also be removed

Mr Buzdar said the Punjab government had decided to use its special powers for granting 90-day imprisonment rebate to prisoners languishing in jails across the province. He said some 3,100 prisoners would get benefit from this concession. “This concession will not be available to the prisoners imprisoned on the charges of heinous crimes,” he said.

The chief minister said the Punjab government was preparing recommendations about the under-trial prisoners and would soon present them to the federal government for a decision.

Mr Buzdar said the Punjab Infectious Diseases Prevention and Control Ordinance, 2020, had been implemented and would allow the civil administration and health department to implement government measures with complete ease and under the cover of law.

The chief minister told media personnel that 82 more cases of Covid-19 were reported in the province on Friday.

Meanwhile, Mr Buzdar earlier chaired a meeting in an open lawn of the Chief Minister’s Office, instead of a closed room to ensure protection from coronavirus.

Reviewing the recommendations and suggestions for the Punjab Financial Package for daily-wagers and labourers being affected from the lockdown, the meeting decided that the relief would be provided to affected people through Easy Paisa.

Published in Dawn, March 29th, 2020

Opinion

Editorial

IMF’s projections
Updated 18 Apr, 2024

IMF’s projections

The problems are well-known and the country is aware of what is needed to stabilise the economy; the challenge is follow-through and implementation.
Hepatitis crisis
18 Apr, 2024

Hepatitis crisis

THE sheer scale of the crisis is staggering. A new WHO report flags Pakistan as the country with the highest number...
Never-ending suffering
18 Apr, 2024

Never-ending suffering

OVER the weekend, the world witnessed an intense spectacle when Iran launched its drone-and-missile barrage against...
Saudi FM’s visit
Updated 17 Apr, 2024

Saudi FM’s visit

The government of Shehbaz Sharif will have to manage a delicate balancing act with Pakistan’s traditional Saudi allies and its Iranian neighbours.
Dharna inquiry
17 Apr, 2024

Dharna inquiry

THE Supreme Court-sanctioned inquiry into the infamous Faizabad dharna of 2017 has turned out to be a damp squib. A...
Future energy
17 Apr, 2024

Future energy

PRIME MINISTER Shehbaz Sharif’s recent directive to the energy sector to curtail Pakistan’s staggering $27bn oil...