Islamabad to have another dam on Soan River: NA told

ISLAMABAD, Jan 08 (NNI): National Assembly resumed session with Speaker Sardar Ayaz Sadiq in the chair on Thursday.

Minister of State for Parliamentary Affairs, Sheikh Aftab Ahmed told the House during question hour that there is a proposal to construct Chirah Dam in Islamabad.

He said the dam is to be constructed on Soan River in Islamabad capital territory jurisdiction near Chirah village, twenty five kilometer north east of Rawalpindi. He said the work will be taken in hand by the government of Punjab after clearance from the consultants M/s NESPAK.

Sheikh Aftab Ahmed pointed out that its cost will be equally shared by the Government of Punjab and Capital Development Authority. He said the CDA has already released over 851 million rupees for this purpose.

To another question, Minister of State told the House that at present thirty-three Pakistan Sweet Homes are working across the country where orphan children are being provided standard livings and education.

Minister of State for Federal Education and Professional Training, Balighur Rehman informed the House that six hundred Pakistani students are studying in Cuba at present under the title “1000 Scholarships for studies in General Comprehensive Medicine” (equivalent to MBBS).

He said 907 students were sent to Cuba under the said project to pursue education in medicine and surgery. Out of these 307 students have completed studies and returned toPakistan.

Answering a question, Parliamentary Secretary for Cabinet Raja Javed Ikhlas told the House that the subject of environment had been devolved to the provinces after the 18th Constitution Amendment. However, the federal government has jurisdiction in federal capital territory and Federally Administered Tribal Areas. He said three industrial units which violated the rules are being proceeded in the Environmental Protection Tribunal,Islamabad.

Parliamentary Secretary for Information, Broadcasting and National Heritage, Mohsin Shah Nawaz Ranjha told the House that the government has declared 403 monuments and sites as protected National Heritage under the Antiquities Act 1975. These sites are presently being looked after by the concerned provincial departments.

Minister of State for Parliamentary Affairs, Sheikh Aftab Ahmed told the House thatPakistan has rich potential in the aviation industry and is expected to grow. He said the foreign airlines mainly from Middle East show willingness to invest in the Aviation Industry of Pakistan and expand their operations.

However, he said, some airlines from North America and Europe are reluctant in investing or expanding their operations to Pakistan largely due to prevailing security concerns. He said Aviation Division is continuously endeavoring to attract the foreign airlines and to build their confidence to expand their flight operations in Pakistan.

To a question, he told the House that over twenty billion rupees have been released under Benazir Income Support Programme for the first quarter of fiscal year 2014-15. He said the total number of beneficiaries is over four point six million.

Replying to a question, Minister of State for Capital Administration and Development Division, Barrister Usman Ibrahim told the House that educational institutions in the federal capital are being opened from Monday. He said practical steps have been taken to strengthen the security of these institutions.

He said boundary walls are being raised up to eight feet and barbed wire is also being erected. He said minimum two security guards are being provided to each institution with metal detectors. He said thirty five CCTV cameras have been installed and more are being installed. He said that three teams have been formed to physically check the security measures of the educational institutions.

Minister for Information and Broadcasting Pervaiz Rashid in a written reply told the House that PEMRA has issued ninety one satellite TV channel licenses and granted landing rights permission to twenty eight foreign satellite TV channels. He said two satellite TV channel licenses have been granted in 2013 as these channels completed their codal formalities in this year. He said no landing rights permission has been granted in the era of present government.

The chair referred the matters relating to bad performance and mismanagement in PIA to the Standing Committee concerned for investigation and report.

Minister for Railways, Khawaja Saad Rafiq, Naeema Kishwar and Asif Hasnain on point of orders raised some issues regarding mismanagement in PIA (Pakistan International Airlines).

 

Shazia Mari of PPP and Abdul Wasim of MQM pointed out that the federal government is trying to take back 650 megawatt electricity from K-Electric on different pretexts. They said it will cause harm to Karachi and the country. PPP and MQM also staged a token walkout from the House on the issue. NNI

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