President Asif Ali Zardari said the present democratic government has launched a massive scheme to provide housing particularly to the low income and working classes.
In his message on the World Habitat Day falling on October 5, he said, the day is an occasion to reiterate our collective responsibility towards improving the future of human habitat.
For us in Pakistan it is also an occasion to reflect on the state of our towns and cities and on the provision of reasonable shelter to all on the one hand and to improve the habitat on the other, he added.
He said growing population and unplanned urbanization have contributed to the deterioration of habitat and also strained the capacity to provide shelter to all.
Mass migration from rural to urban centres in search of jobs and opportunities is a distinguishing feature of our times.
This together with increasing population has resulted in climate change, resource depletion, food insecurity, law and order problems and an increase in the number of people living without reasonable shelter, he observed.
The President said the theme for this years World Habitat Day.
Planning Our Urban Future, therefore, is most relevant in meeting the challenges of inadequate shelter and unplanned urbanization.
Shelter is a most fundamental requirement and a basic right of every citizen.
The Pakistan Peoples Party recognized it over forty years ago when it was founded by its founder Chairman Shaheed Zulfikar Ali Bhutto on the slogan of Roti (Food), Kapra (Clothing) and Makan (Shelter), he added.
Zardari said guided and inspired by this founding slogan the present democratic government has already launched a massive scheme to provide housing particularly to the low income and working classes.
Meeting adequately the challenges of habitat and the housing needs of the people also helps in sustaining fragile democracies, he said adding the observance of the World Habitat Day by the UN and creating an environment for providing financial and diplomatic support for meeting its objectives will also help in strengthening democracy in developing countries.
The President facilitated the UN Habitat and Ministry of Environment for observing World Habitat Day and hoped that events organized around it will enhance the awareness for improving the habitat and thereby the welfare of people.