ISLAMABAD: Finance Minister, Syed Naveed Qamar chaired an Inter-Ministerial Committee Meeting to devise strategy for immediate relief to needy household families in Finance Division on Friday. Earlier the ECC of the Cabinet in its meeting held on 6th May, 2008 decided to constitute a Ministerial Committee comprising Ministers for Finance & Revenue, Industries & Production and Social Welfare & Special Education and organizations of Bait-ul-Mall and NADRA.
The Committee has been tasked to devise a strategy for immediate relief to the needy household families and also finalize scheme for the grant of targeted subsidy on essential food items to them. The committee will submit its recommendations to ECC within two weeks. Relevant Minister would monitor and oversee the implementation of scheme to be launched by the Government of Pakistan.
The Inter-Ministerial Committee held its first meeting and deliberated on a scheme for provision of targeted subsidy on essential food items for the needy families. The Committee earlier recommended that NADRA carries out detailed sample analysis of their data about unemployed, illiterate and widows for assessing number of deserving persons (needy household families), besides using existing data available with Provincial Education Department which could also be availed for identification of eligible beneficiaries. According to existing NADRA estimates the targeted population warranting relief to needy eligible households comes to 3.75 million. The Bait-ul-Mall data confirmed the needy household around 2 million warranting GoP relief support.
The Finance Minister affirmed that GoP would do its best to reach a bulk of needy population on the basis of a transparently available data-based criteria with NADRA, Bait-ul-Maal and other allied agencies. The Committee held that the criteria to support eligible needy people be based on the CNIC-supported national data. Once data-based modalities are finalized, a cash subsidy of Rs.1000/- per month may be disbursed on quarterly basis to an agreed list of eligible needy households nationwide through the forum of Union Councils.
The Inter-Ministerial Committee decided to consult banks and Post Offices to lend support in financial disbursement of GoP relief package to needy households through devising a credible mechanism once disbursement proposals are finalized by stakeholders (GoP Agencies). MOF thereafter shall create fiscal space in the national budget and put it up to the Government for approval. The Meeting was attended by Special Assistants to PM on Finance and Social Sector (Ms. Hina Rabbani Khar and Ms. Shahnaz Wazir Ali) along with other senior officers of Ministries of Industries, Finance and NADRA.-SANA