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ISLAMABAD, May 28: The government on Monday decided to pay the remaining Rs14 billion to the affected families of the Mangla Dam raising project. This decision, among others, was reached at a meeting of the implementation committee of Mangla raising project to review the overall progress headed by Minister for Water and Power Liaquat Ali Jatoi.

Among others, President AJK Raja Muhammad Zulqarnain, Prime Minister AJK Sardar Attique Ahmad Khan and Federal Minister Maj (retd) Tahir Iqbal attended the meeting.

An official announcement issued after the meeting said both the federal ministers assured the meeting on behalf of Pakistan that the dam would not be filled with water until completion of the process of resettlement of the affectees of the dam.

The meeting also decided that government would strive to complete all work in June 2008 so that the additional water could be fully utilised for the benefit of the people of Pakistan.

The meeting also agreed upon the demand of additional settlements for subsidiary families adjacent to the New Mirpur city and four towns and decided to submit the detail study report of additional subsidiary families so that the matter could be submitted to the concerned forum of the government.

It was also decided that the water and sanitation projects would be completed in the residential sector on priority basis.

Mr Jatoi directed Wapda to expedite its development work on two or three shift basis to complete all infrastructure work of the project in stipulated time.

Mr Jatoi would also visit the site of Dhan Galli Bridge along with Canadian consultants and would also visit the New Mirpur city and small towns to review progress of on going construction work.

Mr Jatoi also approved the transfer of hatchery free of cost to the government of AJK along with building and additional land near the Jarri Dam within one month.

The meeting also decided to set up a working group comprising one each representative from the ministry of water and power, KANA, the government of AJK and Wapda, which would monitor the progress of the project and submit its report on weekly basis to the authorities concerned.