BAHAWALNAGAR/SIALKOT-Reading out a message from the Punjab chief minister, acting DCO Tariq Bukhari said that the local bodies would remain inactive until the verdict of elections-related cases lying pending in different courts.

He was addressing a meeting held here with the local bodies’ representatives on the instructions of Punjab government. Reading out the letter of the CM, Mr Bukhari said that the development funds of UCs will be spent in consultation with the chairmen concerned. He said that several elections-related cases are lying pending in different courts and until the verdict of these cases the power cannot be transferred to the LB representatives.

On the other hand, the LB representatives rejected the government excuses, saying that the government is using delaying tactics to avoid the transfer of power to the LB representatives. Former PML-N MPA termed local bodies’ elections a joke and alleged that the Punjab government is deliberately keeping local bodies non-functional to embezzle the funds.

On the other side, the local bodies’ institutions are nurseries of the democracy as they play pivotal role in resolving public problems at local level and the LB representatives must utilize all available resources to serve the masses.

Speakers stated at a convention of elected local bodies representatives here the other day. MNA Sahibzada Syed Iftikharul Hassan Shah, MPA Ch Mohsin Ashraf, ADCG Dr Umar Sher Chatta, Additional SP Irfan Tariq attended the convention.

On the occasion, the DCO said that the government is committed to ensure the smooth transition of powers to the elected local bodies’ representatives without any further delay, saying that some verdicts by the Supreme Court of Pakistan (SCP) and Lahore High Court (LHC) are still pending due to which the transition of power was delayed.

The elections of the heads of the local bodies including the Mayors, Deputy Mayors, Chairmen and Vice Chairmen would also be held very soon, the DCO said, adding that the development funds for the old union councils have been allocated while the suitable buildings were also being searched for the offices of newly established union councils as well.

Addressing the convention, MNA Sahibzada Syed Iftikharul Hassan Shah said that the PML-N government is making all-out-efforts to activate the local bodies with a sole aim to continue the journey of serving the people without any political indiscrimination.

Local MPA Ch Mohsin Ashraf said that the elected LB representatives are the arms of the parliamentarians, which would leave no stone unturned for serving the local people at local level with any political indiscrimination.

Toba Tek Singh DCO Aamir Ijaz Akbar also held a meeting with newly-elected local bodies’ representatives at TMA Hall to assure them of transfer of power.

Addressing the meeting, DCO informed that some election-related cases are pending in the court and the representatives will be transferred powers as the cases are resolved. On the occasion, he directed the administrators of union councils to provide councillors with offices immediately so that they may sit there, hear public problems and get them resolved.

MNA Mian Asadur Rahman, AC Muhammad Khalid, TMO Muhammad Nawaz Khan, DSP Muhammad Saeed, ADLG Zameerul Hassan, DOC Shakeel Ahmed, representative MPA Ch Rashid Gujjar and Newly-elected local bodies representatives attended the meeting.