Lahore:Chief Minister Punjab Shahbaz Sharif has said that if public welfare projects are a sin, he will commit this sin again and again. He said that the newcomer in politics has gone to Britain, leaving the poor people in distress. He said that those criticizing the projects aimed at the welfare of the masses do not want to the poor people of the country avail better facilities and lifestyle.
He said that Punjab government has promoted transparency in the province and by checking corruption of 50 billion rupees in development schemes, utilized these resources on the betterment of the poor masses. He said that new generation is a precious asset of the country and the goal of national progress and prosperity can be achieved by equipping it with modern education while the menace of extremism and terrorism can also be countered in an effective manner. He said that Pakistan could be transformed in accordance with the ideals of its founding fathers by adopting the golden principles of honesty, trust and hard work.
He said that every Muslim is ready to sacrifice his life for upholding the sanctity of the Holy Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) and no Muslim can tolerate blasphemy against the Holy Prophet. He said that the Muslims all over the world are protesting over the sacrilege against the Holy Prophet and peaceful protest is their right and the lesson given by Islam and the Holy Quran. However, he said, the voice of protest should be raised in such a peaceful manner that the world could testify to our discipline and restraint.
He expressed these views while distributing prizes among the position holder students in martic from all over the country at Chief Minister’s secretariat here today. Speaker Punjab Assembly Rana Iqbal Khan, Senator Sardar Zulfiqar Ali Khan Khosa, Provincial Ministers Mian Mujtaba Shuja ur Rehman, Haji Ehsan ud Din Qureshi, Iqbal Channar, Malik Nadeem Kamran, Advisor Zaeem Hussain Qadri, Assembly Members, Vice Chancellors, Principals, intellectuals, columnists, teachers, parents and students were present in large numbers on this occasion. Prizes worth rupees Rs.5.5 crore were distributed among boy and girl position holder students from all over the country on this occasion.
Congratulating the students winning top positions in the matriculation examination, the Chief Minister said that Punjab government is arranging such ceremonies in honour of position-holder students for the last four years in which students from all the four provinces as well as Federal Board, Azad Kashmir and Gilgit-Baltistan also participate and they are rewarded for their hard work. He said that during the 65 years history of the country, such scenes where students of poor and backward areas are called to the stage and encouraged have never been witnessed. Referring to the steps taken by the Punjab government for the uplift of education sector, the Chief Minister said that 35 thousand scholarships are being given from Punjab Educational Endowment Fund of Rs.10 billion to the poor but talented students to enable them continue their studies and these students also include those of KPK, Sindh, Balochistan, Azad Kashmir and Gilgit-Baltistan.
He said that quality education is the right of every child and it is the responsibility of the government to equip young generation with knowledge. He said that Punjab government is striving for promotion of quality education and ensuring access of every child to education. He said that 16 Daanish Schools have been set up in the most backward areas of the province and the brilliant students of these neglected areas are being given educational facilities at par with Aitchison and Grammar Schools. He said that position holder students are being sent to the prestigious educational institutions of the world on study tours due to which they have gained tremendous confidence.
The Chief Minister further said that Pakistan is facing the worst challenges and the loot and plunder of Ali Baba Forty Thieves have brought the national economy to the verge of disaster. He said that the elite are ruling the country for the last 65 years and all facilities and privileges are available to the privileged while the poor are still deprived of even the basic facilities. He said that trillions of rupees are being looted and a new corruption scandal is coming to the fore every day. He said that such faces are fully exposed to the people. He said that these elements are conspiring against Punjab and destroying its agriculture and industries. He questioned is it justice that factories in Punjab operate for three to four days as compared to the factories and mills of other areas which remain operational for six days a week.
He said that Punjab government has diverted sources to the welfare of the poor masses and for first time in the history, air-conditioned buses have been plied for the workers, labourers and the common man. He said that he is introducing an excellent transport system for the poor but his opponents are not tolerating provision of modern facilities to the deprived segments of the society and that is why are criticizing public service projects. He said that a sum of Rs.28 billion is being spent on metro bus service project which will result in speedy transport facilities to the masses. He said that federal government has not given even a penny for the project and it is being executed purely with the provincial resources. He said that Punjab faced the worst outbreak of dengue last year and politicians, government officers as well as all segments of the society worked day and night and saved thousands of precious lives. He said that dengue situation is completely under control this year. He said that Pakistan comprise of Sindh, Balochistan, KPK, Punjab, Gilgit-Baltistan and Azad Kashmir and it is the country of 18 crore people. He said that there is a need to make collective efforts to resolve the crises being faced by the country and to put it on the road to progress and development.
Earlier, the Chief Minister gave away prizes to position holder boy and girl students. The Chief Minister announced a house in Aashiyana Housing Scheme to a student Muhammad Naeem who belongs to a village of Pakpattan and had won the first position in matric in Multan Board. He said that the student could be given a house in Pakpattan instead of Aashiyana Housing Scheme, if he desired the same. It may be mentioned that the student belongs to an extremely poor family and his house has been damaged by the recent rains.