LAHORE - Punjab Chief Minister Mian Muhammad Shahbaz Sharif has said that the timely steps taken by the Punjab government have stabilised the prices of essential items in the market.

He has directed all concerned departments to continue proactive role for providing relief to the common man.

He also asked the RPOs and DCOs to ensure their presence at the time of auction of vegetables in the markets and take action against the hoarders and profiteers.

The Chief Minister directed that the helpline set up for redressal of the complaints of the people should be made functional at the earliest whereas sahulat centres should also be set up for immediate redressal of public complaints in sastay bazaars and vegetable markets.

While taking immediate notice of not auctioning vegetables in the market, he ordered suspension of acting Chairman Market Committee Rahim Yar Khan.

He said this while presiding over a high-level meeting on the price control of the essential items on Wednesday.

The Chief Minister asked participants of the meeting to act for improving supply of eatable items including pulses and fruit to the market.

He asked the members of the Cabinet Committee, Chief Secretary and Inspector General Police to visit three districts in a week and submit a report in this regard.

The Chief Minister directed to ensure that rate-lists of essential items are displayed prominently at shops and in the markets.

He also ordered for preparing feasibility of setting up model bazaars at tehsil level as well as to make Kahna Kacha Vegetable Market of Lahore a model market.

Shahbaz Sharif also directed to set up small sastay bazaars at mohalla level throughout Punjab including provincial metropolis and ,added, that provision of essential items should be ensured at these small bazaars.

Setting up small sastay bazaars be started from Lahore, he stated.

The CM directed that setting up of price control response committees at town level should be considered for keeping a watchful eye on the prices on permanent basis. Shahbaz Sharif also directed the departments concerned to take under the consideration the matter of making the law more effective against big fish involved in overcharging and making this offence non-bailable.

He said that consumer associations can play a vital role in strengthening the prices of essential items therefore, representatives of these associations should be mobilised.

The CM has directed the administration and police to take indiscriminate action against the petrol stations involved in overcharging.