He was presiding over a meeting regarding promotion of sports activities and the projects of Punjab Horticulture Authority at Minar-e-Pakistan Tent office, here today. Deputy Speaker Punjab Assembly Rana Mashhood Ahmed Khan, Special Assistant Zaeem Hussain Qadri, Assembly Members, Mian Marghoob Ahmed, Hafiz Mian Nauman, Ch. Shahbaz, Mian Mohsin Latif, Secretaries of Sports and Local Government departments, Commissioner and District Coordination Officer Lahore besides Directors General LDA and PHA were present. Addressing the meeting, Muhammad Shabhaz Sharif said that government is extending maximum opportunities to the youth to participate in constructive activities and billions of rupees are being spent on the projects of promotion of healthy activities in the province. He said that provision of recreational facilities to the masses in the present age of stress and strain is of vital importance and in view of this fact parks are being beautified while horticulture is being promoted on development projects. He directed that proper arrangements be made for the maintenance and upkeep of the playgrounds while a vigorous campaign should be launched for promoting public awareness regarding availability of sports facilities so that maximum people could benefit. He said that women comprise a major part of country’s population and they have won laurels for the country in sports and other sectors. He said that opportunities are also being offered to women for healthy activities and separate playgrounds and parks are being developed for women as well. He further directed that illegal occupants of state lands be identified in the province and these lands be retrieved from them for providing sports facilities to the youth.
Deputy Speaker Punjab Assembly Rana Mashhood Ahmed Khan informed the meeting that a youth helpline will soon be set up with the collaboration of NGOs for providing counseling to the youth through experts in various sectors. He said that a website has also been launched regarding playgrounds in the province where all details about these grounds have been provided. He said that a state-of-the-art gymnasium is being constructed at Rajanpur where facilities pertaining to 17 different sports would be available. He said that ground managements committees have been constituted and representation has been given to NGOs and sponsors in these committees. He said that 4,300 sites have been identified for setting up playgrounds. Director General PHA gave a briefing to the meeting about the pace of implementation of horticulture projects.