PESHAWAR - The Provincial Development Working Party (PDWP) met here on Wednesday with Additional Chief Secretary Khalid Pervez in the chair approved 29 projects of worth Rs27.746 billion in the sector of agriculture, education, health, energy & power, irrigation and infrastructure.

While considering 35 projects under various sectors, the PDWP decided to approve 29 projects subject to rationalisation of cost in accordance with the prevailing policies and detailed decision of the PDWP. Approval of six projects was deferred by the department for further improvement in the project document based on sound planning so that no issue is faced during the execution.

The PDWP approved the purchase and provision of free text books to 5.316 million students at a cost of Rs2.5 billion. The Department was directed to conduct impact evaluation study of the project being carried out for the last 11 years and also come up with suggestions for its improvements. The meeting also approved a project for reconstruction of buildings of old schools constructed before 1974.

In agriculture sector, the forum approved strengthening and rehabilitation of existing veterinary institutions and establishment of 100 veterinary dispensaries in rented buildings in addition to construction of building for 30 Nos existing veterinary dispensaries being functioning in rented building.

Endowment fund for universities was approved at a cost of Rs4 billion. Teacher engagement for BS (4-year degree programme), purchase of furniture, computers, library books, plant and machinery lab equipments and sports gears for government colleges, construction of girl students hostel at Shaheed Benazir Bhutto University Sheringel Dir (Upper) were some other projects of Higher Education Department which were approved during the meeting.

For promotion of sports an amount of Rs150 million was approved for establishment of sports academy for the talented youth. Renovation of existing sports facilities spread over the province was approved at cost of Rs300 million. The forum also approved Rs150 million for providing counterpart funding to the tourism development projects on PPP mode, which also includes Cable car at Naran valley.

Approved projects of the Energy & Power Department includes construction of Karora HPP in district Shangla (11 MW), construction of Jabori HPP (10 MW), purchase of land for hydel projects, and electrification of 100 villages through solar energy.

In road sector  construction of 3 Nos RCC bridges i.e. Surbat, Dogai and Garonai district Dir Upper and construction and rehabilitation of roads (a) Gajoo Khel Ameero road (b) Jabbi road (c) Piran Bala and Payan (d) from Duran to Masamkhel via Malikhel Bala Payan, district Nowshera were also approved.

An amount of Rs1.5 billion was approved for construction and rehabilitation of rural roads across the province. Construction of public park at Swabi, construction of fruit and vegetable markets in selected districts and bus terminals in Mardan, Swat, Dir Upper and district Swabi, including land cost were also approved in the project.

Construction of 01 hostel (60 Rooms), 02 lecture theaters and laboratories at Saidu Medical College, district Swat was approved at a cost of Rs300.00 million.

Approved projects under irrigation sector includes restoration of different Khwars in Nowshera Cantonment, district Nowshera, revamping of Jindi River district Charsadda, installation of irrigation/augmentation tube wells and lift irrigation schemes in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, improvement /construction of irrigation facilities and flood protection works in district Abbottabad, Haripur and Mansehra