QUETTA: Balochistan’s caretaker Chief Minister, Mir Ali Mardan Khan Domki, attending the Federal Steering Committee (FSC) meeting, disclosed that the Rs10 billion relief package announced by former prime minister Shehbaz Sharif for the rehabilitation of the flood-affected people in the province has not been provided by the federal government yet.

Mr Domki, along with his financial managers, including Additional Chief Secretary Abdul Saboor Kakar, Secretary Finance Babar Khan, and other concerned Balochistan officials, in Islamabad attended the FSC meeting presided over by the caretaker Minister for Planning and Development, Muhammad Sami Saeed.

The meeting discussed various issues pertaining to the rehabilitation of flood-affected people and implementation on projects. In the meeting, the proposal to increase the compensation amount for fully and partially affected houses in the flood-affected districts was supported by the participants on the condition of not reducing the number of victims.

While explaining the position of Balochistan regarding the projects proposed under the Cast Breakup of Umbrella PC-1, Co-Chair Mr Domki said that almost every district of the province was affected by the worst flood of 2022, and the communication system, including health and education institutions, were destroyed.

Discloses delay in Rs10bn relief package; seeks Rs400m for World Bank-supported projects

Mr Domki said that the federal government announced a relief package of Rs10 billion last year for the relief and rehabilitation of flood-affected people, but the announced grant has not been released yet.

He added that the communication system, health, and educational institutions were badly affected, and over 50 bridges were completely and partially collapsed due to heavy rains and devastating floods in the province.

He emphasised in the meeting that the Executive Committee of the National Economic Council (ECNEC) should ensure the early release of approved funds of Rs400 million for the rehabilitation of various sectors in the affected districts. He also asked to ensure the immediate implementation of the rehabilitation projects under the World Bank’s support.

Addressing the meeting, Mr Saeed said that the delay in the implementation of the World Bank’s rehabilitation programme was due to the non-appointment of the project director, but now a viable strategy has been formulated for the implementation of the projects, after which work on rehabilitation projects in Balochistan would be initiated soon.

He said that the federal government will provide all possible support to the Balochistan government for the implementation of the World Bank’s rehabilitation projects.

The meeting was attended by the officials concerned with the federal government, departments, and representatives of development partners who have reviewed the progress of the rehabilitation projects in the flood-affected districts of Sindh and Balochistan.

Published in Dawn, November 30th, 2023

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