LAHORE - Prime Minister Syed Yousuf Raza Gilani told members of party’s Punjab Executive Committee on Sunday that power outages would end within one year, as the government had chalked out a comprehensive plan to resolve energy crisis.

PPP Secretary General Jehangir Badr, Central Punjab President Imtiaz Safdar Warraich, Sami Ullah Khan, Dr Hasnaat Shah, Opposition leader in the Punjab Assembly Raja Riaz and other members attended the meeting held at the Governor House. Later, PPP Women Wing President MNA Faryal Talpur also joined the meeting.

The PM regretted the problems faced by the people due to electricity and gas loadshedding and hoped that with the measures being taken by the government, the energy crisis would be over by the end of this year. In winter, he added, the power generation has been reduced due to shortage of water. The prime minister assured that the government would fulfil its promises in this regard.

Gilani told the meeting that a special cabinet meeting would be held a day after tomorrow to tackle the issues of energy and gas shortage. He said despite all odds, 3,500 megawatts power were added to the national grid and added that before end of the tenure, the government would be able to end unscheduled loadshedding.

He said the policy of Independent Power Producers (IPP) was sabotaged by Saifur Rehman when there was a need for consistency in the energy policy. He underlined the need for consistency in policies and regretted that every government changed policies of the previous one.

The prime minister said the government was making efforts to control the price hike, and due to effective measures taken by it the sugar was now again being sold at Rs45 per kilogramme in the open market despite the fact that many forces tried to create shortage of sugar and increased its prices.

He said the government would go to the public on the basis of its performance and programmes like the Benazir Income Support Programme (BISP) and other projects, which were proofs of its success. He said that Rs1.5 trillion had been spent on development projects and the government also created jobs, which boosted the national economy.

The prime minister also discussed provincial matters of the party with the members of the executive committee and vowed to organise the party at grassroots level. He said five per cent development funds would be specified for district office bearers of the PPP who would recommend schemes in their respective areas.

Gilani also approved five licenses of prohibited bore weapons for each member of the executive committee. He announced that the year 2012 would be celebrated as the year of party workers.

The members of the Executive Council appreciated stance of the prime minister on the memo issue and said viewpoint of the prime minister boosted morale of PPP in general and Party workers in particular.

The prime minister also discussed options to give more facilities to the youth of country with the executive committee members and told them that ministry of Professional and Technical Training would train the youth and also give stipends.

He said that PPP government had a lot of achievements to show to the people, but complained that PPP office bearers were not highlighting these in public.

Later, the PM chaired another party meeting at the Governor House to discuss names of potential PPP candidates who would be fielded in the coming by-elections in Multan, Kasur and Attock.

Meanwhile, the PM inaugurated seven-day celebrations of 84th birth anniversary of the founder chairman of the Pakistan Peoples Party and former prime minister Zulfikar Ali Bhutto by cutting cake at a ceremony held at Governor House here on Sunday.

“During the seven-day programme, the vision of the Shaheed Zulfikar Ali Bhutto will be highlighted, he said.

He said that Shaheed Zulfikar Ali Bhutto made defence of the country invincible through the nuclear programme and gave the unanimous Constitution of 1973. He said the great leader Zulfikar Ali Bhutto struggled for the rights of poor masses and strengthened Pakistan through a unanimous Constitution of 1973 which is considered a symbol of the federation.