Provinces get Rs220b to counter terrorism

national assemblyISLAMABAD – The National Assembly was informed Thursday that over Rs 220 billion have been provided by the government to the provinces and agencies concerned to counter terrorism during the last five years.

Interior Minister Ch. Nisar Ali Khan in a written reply told the House that irregularities in the utilization of funds provided to Khyber Pakhtunkhwa police under Prime Minister’s package were pointed out by National Accountability Bureau and the cases are presently subjudice in NAB courts. He said the NAB is investigating into the reported irregularities.

Parliamentary Secretary Interior and Narcotics Maryam Aurangzeb told the House that the Interior Ministry has arranged forty bomb disposal response vehicles with relevant equipment from Britain and the United States out of which twenty five are yet to be received. She said five such vehicles with equipment have already been handed over one each to Islamabad capital territory, Punjab, Sindh, Khyber Pakhtunkhwa and Balochistan and the remaining are in the process of allocation. She said the operational deployment of Bomb Disposal Response vehicles will significantly enhanced the capability of provinces to effectively counter Improvised Explosive Device attacks including preservation of crime scenes and investigation.

Parliamentary Secretary for Finance Rana Muhammad Afzal Khan told the House that the team of Securities Exchange Commission of Pakistan will be completed shortly including its chairman.

To a question, he said the performance of Pakistan Steel, PIA and Pakistan Railways has improved considerably after receiving loans from the government.

Answering a question, Rana Muhammad Afzal told the House that thirty four thousand five hundred and one vehicles of different categories have been imported during 2013-14 from Japan, UAE, UK, USA, Australia, Germany, China, Thailand, South Africa and Indonesia.  These categories include agricultural tractors, buses, coaches, cars, jeeps, trucks, special purpose vehicles and motorcycles.

Rana Muhammad Afzal said that sit-ins of PTI and PAT have caused long term and short term losses to the economy and the government was to pay 645 million rupees additional to the security agencies for protection of the sit-ins.

He said Stock Exchange had gone down and the rupee devalued against dollar because of these sit-ins. But when the people rejected the purpose of the sit-ins, the Stock Exchange again started performing well and rupee is also appreciating against dollar. He said foreign direct investment decreased, investors’ confidence shattered and Sukuk Bonds were delayed. He said now the Sukuk Bonds have been five times over-subscribed restoring investors’ confidence on government’s policies.

Rana Muhammad Afzal replying to another question informed the House that Pakistan Bureau of Statistics has completed all the preparations for conduct of 6th population and Housing census in the country. He said the matter is under consideration of Council of Common Interest. He said after approval by the CCI the government will conduct the census on priority basis.

Parliamentary Secretary for Interior and Narcotics Control Maryam Aurangzeb told the House that the government is strengthening the centres setup for the treatment of drug addicts in the country. She said the addicts are also being taught various skills so that they can get a respectable job after their recovery. She said the government is also taking steps to check the suppliers of the narcotics drugs.

Maryam Aurangzeb told the House that under National Internal Security Policy, strategies are being finalized in coordination with the provinces.

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