Businessmen launch safe charity campaign

LAHORE (Staff Reporter): Leading businessmen and the city government officials on Tuesday launched a Safe Charity Campaign to share a message with the general public that they must use their charity carefully and with all responsibility so that their donations couldn’t be used against the country. The Lahore Chamber of Commerce & Industry (LCCI) and the Lahore City Metropolitan Corporation jointly organised the campaign to create awareness and sensitivity among different sections of the society, as the volume of donations routinely increases during Ramazan. Sharing his views with the gathering, LCCI President Abdul Basit said “Month of Ramazan teaches us to develop our society as healthy and loving.” He urged the people to spend generously to support the needy and deserving people. “We want to share a message with our people that they must use their charity carefully and with all responsibility,” he added.

Speaking on the occasion, Peace and Secular Studies Executive Director Diep Saeeda pointed out that Pakistanis donate an estimated amount of Rs650 billion annually in charity, according to a nationwide study on charity trends. “Only two percent believe that charity funds are misused while rests are not aware where their donation is spent,” she said.

Basit said, “We must remember that our donations shouldn’t be used against our people and our country. We have to make our country a safer place to live besides reducing contributions to a cause that inversely affects peace efforts.” He urged the people to make special arrangements to assist the poor and deserving people living in their surroundings.

Prominent religious scholar Prof Dr Khalid Zaheer said that everyone must contribute carefully and donate for deserving and needy. “Charity is never obligatory but it is always additional. There is a noticeable increase in charitable work during the holy month,” he said.

 Minister seeks report on availability of subsidised flour

LAHORE (Staff Reporter): Provincial Minister for Planning and Development Malik Nadeem Kamran has sought report on availability of subsidised flour in districts. While chairing a meeting of Cabinet Committee on Ramazan Plan at Civil Secretariat on Wednesday, he directed the deputy commissioners to ensure 100 percent availability of subsidised flour in green bags at shops throughout the province and submit a detailed report by June 15 (Thursday). He said the Punjab chief minister has directed that only subsidized flour would be sold at every shop in the province and sale of white flour bags be stopped. He mentioned that sale of flour in white bags was banned to give benefit of subsidised flour to maximum number of people. Punjab Chief Secretary Captain (R) Zahid Saeed directed the deputy commissioners to implement orders regarding provision of subsidised flour and take action in case of violation.

 He said that no complaint about unavailability or shortage of green bag flour should be received, adding that after ensuring availably of subsidised flour at shops, white bags be lifted immediately.

The Food secretary told the meeting that all the flour mills in the province have been informed about ban on sale of unsubsidised flour in white bags and policy on the provision of subsidised flour. He warned that if any shop found selling flour in white bag, it would be sealed. The Industries secretary, Additional IG Special Branch, Lahore deputy commissioner, officers of Agriculture and Livestock Department attended the meeting, whereas the deputy commissioners joined the meeting through video link.

 Oil, gas exploration up by 79pc in four years

ISLAMABAD (APP): Pakistan witnessed an increase of 79 percent in oil and gas exploration activities in different potential areas during the last four years of current government as compared to corresponding period of the previous government. In its stride to achieve self-sufficiency in the energy sector, the present government took a number of initiatives which resulted in drilling of 179 exploratory wells and 194 appraisal/development wells. "Subsequently, the Exploration and Production (E&P) companies made 98 new oil and gas discoveries with 40 percent success rate," official sources told APP. They termed the increased number of discoveries a 'record' set by the present government in a short span of four years, which so far added 944 million cubic feet per day (MMCFD) gas in the transmission network across the country and added 32,343 barrels oil per day (BOPD) in the domestic production.

Answering a question, the sources informed that the government granted 46 exploration licences and 33 leases, carried out 25,568 2D and 19,478 3D seismic surveys. Besides, it made 1,073,283 meter drillings which is 52 percent higher than the last government's tenure.

Replying to another question, they said over Rs 836 billion investment poured in the E&P sector of the country during tenure of the current government.

 FPCCI hosts China South Asia Business Forum in Kunming

KARACHI (INP): Vice President Federation of Pakistan Chambers of Commerce (FPCCI) Saquib Fayyaz Magoon headed a Pakistani delegation to China to attend the 12th China South Asia Business Forum meeting in Kunming. This year FPCCI had the proud privilege of being host of this forum. Pakistan delegation included Zubair Ahmed Malik, former president FPCCI, Hameed Akhtar Chadda, former vice president FPCCI, Nasir Uddin Sheikh, chairman Standing Committee on Exhibition, and Mahin Khan. FPCCI and TDAP jointly established more than 200 stalls in the “South Asian countries and South East Asia Commodity Fair” and exhibited different products of Pakistan. Vice President FPCCI Saquib Fayyaz Magoon, while delivering his welcome address, said that China is the model of success story in the world especially with their neighborly countries and regions. Most recent example is China – Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) which shall ultimately prove to be a game changer especially between Pakistan and China and all neighboring countries.

While concluding, he said that our display of products shall attract huge investment and we look forward to have similar activities in Pakistan.