LAHORE   -  A meeting of the provincial parliamentary party was held at 90-Shahrah-e-Quaid-e-Azam on Thursday with Punjab Chief Minister Sardar Usman Buzdar in the chair.

Provincial ministers, including Finance Minister Hashim Jawan Bakht, and MPAs attended the meeting wherein upcoming budget session strategy was finalised.

Addressing the meeting, the chief minister said the PTI government would present its maiden budget for the province for fiscal year 2019-20 on Friday (tomorrow).

He said the government, despite difficult economic circumstances, would present a public-friendly budget that would also depict the ruling party’s manifesto.

The chief minister said that a huge amount was being allocated for an equal development programme for southern Punjab. Development of the areas ignored in the past was being focused and opinion of elected representatives was being given importance in preparation of the budget. He instructed the ministers to ensure their presence in the assembly during the budget session and take an active part.

Austerity was a hallmark of the PTI government and the budget would also depict this policy, he said, adding that reforms were being introduced in the health and education sectors. He said that the Punjab Assembly had taken a lead with record legislation to its credit so far.

Provincial Law Minister Raja Basharat said an open debate on the budget would start from Monday.

Finance Minister Hashim Jawan Bakht said the budget was prepared with hard work and non-development expenditure was being curtailed. Similarly, steps would be announced for health and agriculture sectors. He apprised the meeting of salient features of the budget.

CM offers condolences to president

Punjab Chief Minister Sardar Usman Buzdar has expressed a deep sense of sorrow over the death of brother-in-law of President Arif Alvi.  In a condolence message, he has extended sympathies to the bereaved family and prayed to the Almighty to rest the departed soul in eternal peace. Also, CM Buzdar expressed a deep sense of sorrow over the death of the father of FO spokesman Dr Muhammad Faisal.  He has extended sympathies to the bereaved family and prayed for the departed soul.