LAHORE - Federal Minister for Education Shafqat Mehmood on Monday said that new Local Bodies System of Punjab was one of the top priorities of Prime Minister Imran Khan that guaranteed the transfer of power to the people at the grassroots level.

He expressed these views while presiding over a meeting at the Chief Minister’s House here along with Punjab Minister for Law Raja Basharat in which the process of transfer of powers and assets under the new Punjab Local Government Act was considered and consulted.

Punjab Minister for Housing Mian Mahmood-ur-Rasheed, Provincial Minister for Finance Hashim Javan Bakht, Additional Chief Secretary Punjab Shaukat Ali, Secretary Finance Abdullah Sumbal, Additional Secretary Local Government Muhammad Arshad and other officials were present in the meeting. Additional Chief Secretary Local Government Tahir Khurshid participated through video link due to Covid-19 quarantine.

The Federal Minister was briefed on Punjab Local Government Act 2019. Shafqat said that the process of transfer of powers and assets including Local Bodies’ elections should be completed smoothly.

On the occasion, Raja Basharat said that Prime Minister Imran Khan himself attended several meetings during the preparation of the new Punjab Local Government Act and gave full guidance to the Punjab government.

He said, “The new Local Body Law is comprehensive in all respects and in line with the aspirations of the people. In the new Local Government System, various sectors including education, health and housing would go to the Local Government.”

Basharat said that necessary legal amendments were also being made to make the new local government system more useful and people friendly.

Additional Chief Secretary Local Government Tahir Khurshid said that work was underway on the process of transfer of powers and assets. 

He said that all resources were being utilized to bring the new Local Body System in line with the vision of the Prime Minister and the Chief Minister of Punjab. He further said that in order to adapt the system to modern requirements, information technology training was being imparted to the employees of the local bodies and twelve departments of the LG&CD were being digitized.