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Imran Khan pledged all-out support to provinces

25 September, 2018

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ISLAMABAD: Prime Minister Imran Khan Monday pledged federal government’s all-out support to the provinces in resolution of their issues and making the federating units stronger.

Chairing a meeting of the Council of Common Interests (CCI), the prime minister said the federal government was committed to make the council an effective platform and to play a positive role for the resolution of issues among the provinces and strengthen the federation.

According to a communiqué issued after the meeting, the CCI directed the Higher Education Commission (HEC) to finalize its recommendations within a month for a countrywide uniform higher education system in coordination with federal and the provincial governments.

The HEC was further directed to formulate a strategy for the uplift of educational institutions as well as better coordination between Centre and the provinces.

The CCI, which met with Prime Minister Imran Khan in chair, directed the Planning Commission to review the projects of power distribution and transmission network in Balochistan, besides calling for immediate launch of work on the projects of crucial nature.

It referred the request of Sindh province seeking additional water supply for Karachi to the National Water Council, which would present its recommendations to the CCI keeping in view the situation of existing water reservoirs, water sharing formula among provinces and the ground realities. Besides, the National Water Council would also suggest measures to stop wastage of water and ensure its judicious use. Deliberating over the less availability of water in Pat Feeder and Kirthar canals, the CCI asked the chief ministers of Sindh and Balochistan to sort out the matter mutually. The Centre and the provinces agreed over the true implementation of AGN Qazi formula for the distribution of net hydel profits.

The CCI constituted a committee under the minister for inter-provincial coordination to formulate recommendations on devolution of Employees Old Age Benefits Institution (EOBI) and the Workers Welfare Fund (WWF) to the provinces.

The council decided to refer the Sindh government’s proposed amendments in the Petroleum Policy 2012 to the Economic Coordination Committee (ECC) of the cabinet, which would formulate recommendations considering the proposed amendments.

The CCI reached a consensus to assign the Pakistan Standards and Quality Control Authority (PSQCA) the responsibility of uniform standards and the provision of one-window facility to the relevant companies. In this regard, a committee comprising representatives from all the provinces, Azad Kashmir and Gilgit-Baltistan was also constituted to look into the legal and constitutional aspects.

The council formed a task force to propose measures for effective implementation of regulatory authorities and the establishment of government’s writ in the provinces. It decided to launch nationwide ‘Pakistan Cleanliness Movement’ which would be inaugurated by Prime Minister Imran Khan on October 7. The provinces also assured their full participation in the campaign.

The prime minister, in his remarks on the occasion, stressed the need for improvement of educational standards in Balochistan and directed the HEC to take measures in coordination with the provincial government. He told the meeting that the services of Shaukat Khanam Memorial Cancer Hospital would be extended to Balochistan for the provision of healthcare facilities, particularly the diagnosis of cancer. The prime minister directed to establish a comprehensive and transparent mechanism for water distribution among the provinces and the provision of timely updates to the provinces.

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