Meeting of the Senate Standing Committee on Planning, Development and Special Initiatives, under the chairmanship of Senator Saleem Mandviwalla to consider and finalize the recommendations of Members on the Finance (Amendment), Bill, 2021 relating to Public Sector development Program 2021-22, was held, here at the Parliament House, on Wednesday.
Senator Sardar Muhamad Shafiq Tareen raised the matter of inadequate allocation for DI khan to Zhob and Zhob-Kuchlak projects. He said that these projects won’t even start with these allocations. He also commented that Southern Baluchistan package is a step to divide Baluchistan, as the Pashtoon Districts in Northern Baluchistan are totally ignored. He also demanded that Fata- Baluchistan scholarship should be continued for least five more years. Senator Sardar Tareen also raised the issue of dualization of road from Karachi to Quetta to Chaman, he asked that what is the reason that N-25 road has been divided in 2 parts. One is included for government funding while the other is left to public private partnership project. He asked that his road should be prioritized. Replying to the questions raised by Senator Shafiq Tareen, the officials of the NHA said that we demanded for 198 Billion Rupees and a grant of 113 Billion was approved. So we already had a shortfall of 80 Billion Rupees.
The official of the HEC apprised the committee that there are total 168 Projects out of which 128 are on-going projects, and 40 are new projects. 60 to 70 percent projects are structured and 30 percent are human development projects. 40 new projects have been budgeted this year, total cost of ongoing project is 29.736 billion and cost of new projects is 12.713 Billion. This year total HEC development budget is 42.45 Billion.
66 projects have been approved this year out of which 40 projects have been budgeted. Province-wise distribution of the projects is that Baluchistan has been allocated 16 projects, KPK is given 30 projects. Sindh is given 22 and Punjab is given 35 projects. These are total 103 projects out of which 76 are ongoing and 27 new projects. In addition to this AJK has been given 7 projects. Federal territories have been given 21 projects. Gilgit Baltistan has been given 5 Projects. 32 projects for running scholarship programs have been approved Province-wise and shares have been given by the Federal Government, he further added.
The official from the Ministry of Federal Education and Federal Training apprised the committee of the total 24 ongoing projects. It started from 9 Billion and for next year 5 billion allocations is present. Senator Nuzhat Sadiq said that due to the Pandemic last year, educational programs were aired on television channels for the teaching purposes. The committee was told that efforts would be made to improve them.
The meeting was concluded with the directions that the remaining meetings of the committee have been cancelled following a unanimous protest by the chairman and the committee members, terming the annual PSDP budget meetings exercise as untimely, futile, and undermining the recommendatory role of the senate of the Pakistan.