LAHORE             -           Punjab government will enact law to reign in private schools to save parents from paying exorbitant fee, Education Minister Dr Murad Rass told the Punjab Assembly during question hour on Monday.  During general discussion on Health, Dr Yasmin Rashid claimed that good steps of the government have helped in controlling coronavirus.

The session started ine hour and 35 minutes behind the scheduled time with Panel of Chairman Mian Muhammad Shafi in the chair.  During question-hour on Education, Dr Murad Rass said that the government has decided to enact a new law to bring under its purview private educational institutions regarding their fees, uniforms, syllabus and other issues. The proposed law would bar the private educational institutions from charging parent exorbitant fees.

He said had the law been in place the teacher who sexually harassed students in Lahore Grammar School would have been behind the bars instead of apologizing for his highhandedness.  He lamented that the PML-N remained in power for 10 consecutive years but did not enact any law for regulating private educational institutions and that the PTI government claimed the credit for paying attention to this important issue. He said that as long as there is coronavirus pandemic, the private schools will receive 20 per cent less fees. He said so far the department has fined 36 schools on various counts as managements of various schools has begun selling face masks to students.

He told a questioner that as many as 42,000 books containing provocative content have been removed from the market, while the publishers have also been blacklisted.

He said the government would deal with those who publish hateful and provocative material with iron hands as another law in this regard is also in the offing.  During general discussion on health, Dr Yasmin Rashid said around 600 tests were being conducted at initial stage of COVID-19 but now the government has capacity to conduct over 12,000 tests.

She said that there is 90 per cent decline in COVID-19.  She said that Prime Minister Iman Khan has decided to give civil award to Dr. Mustafa Kamal Pasha, vice chancellor of Nishtar Medical University Multan, who lost his life while fighting against COVID-19.  The provincial government also started establishing mother and child hospitals in Punjab.

PML-N’s Tahir Khalil Sindhu claimed that only in July the dengue larva has been detected over 4000 places in Lahore but the government has not taken any action.  ONL-N’s Kh Salman Rafiq said that giving award  is good move but those doctors, nurses and paramedic staff shouldn’t be forgotten who fought against COVID. Rana Iqbal, Khursheed Saqib, Uzma Kardar, Shahida Ahmad and Raheela Khadim also took part in the discussion. On completion of agenda, the chair adjourned the session till Tuesday (today) at 2pm.