LAHORE - Punjab Minister for Finance Hashim Jawan Bakht on Friday said that no discrimination was made with any of the city in the provincial Budget 2020-21.

Talking to the mediamen after the assembly session, he said that social sector investment was unavoidable in the wake of COVID-19 pandemic and Lahore was on the top of the list for allocations made for saving people from coronavirus. He said, how rulers could give priority to Orange Line Metro

Train (OLMT) in a province where four patients were laying on a single bed in hospitals.

He believed that if hospitals were given equal importance likewise infrastructure development projects then the situation to control COVID-19  was altogether different.

Bakht mentioned the incumbent government activated the Lahore and other development authorities of the province for the infrastructure development projects, besides promoting the Public Private Partnership (PPP) for infrastructure projects.

He said, the construction of Southern loop of Lahore Ring Road under public-private partnership at a cost of Rs 10 billion was already approved.

He said, the work on modern public hospital announced in the Budget 2019-20 would be started in the next Budget 2020-21. Further, working on the missing

facilities in the hospitals was already started before the budget, he added.

He said the introduction of modern technology in education was the manifesto of Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) government and the government would start

work on the universities announced in the Budget 2019-20 in fiscal year 2020-21.

Bakht said that situation created after COVID-19 was new for the world and Pakistan too, while the past practices to control the pandemic did not work for it.

In such scenario, change in the government decisions was in accordance with the changing situation to protect the life and economic loss of the public.

He said, unemployment and restrictions for doing business would not only cause the economic issues but also the social issues and affect the private lives of the public. He urged the opposition to support the government for creation of awareness  and adoption of COVID-19 Standard Operating Procedures (SOPs) among the public instead of doing politics on the issues.