ISLAMABAD - President Dr Arif Alvi on Wednesday emphasised the need for holding a donors’ conference on population to help the government in stemming the rising tide of population.

The President expressed these views while chairing 4th meeting of the Federal Task Force on Alarming Population Growth in Pakistan here at Aiwan-e-Sadr.

He called for special efforts to arrange national and international finances for promoting family planning and checking the growing population of the country.

He highlighted that rapidly growing population had direct negative impacts on climate change, environment and was putting tremendous pressure on the natural and economic resources of the country.

Ministry of NHSRC gave a detailed presentation on the population planning’s strategy. The provincial representatives, including Azad Jammu and Kashmir (AJK), briefed the meeting about the measures taken by their respective governments for promoting family planning services.

It was informed that the provincial governments were seriously focusing on population control measures by allocating more resources, enhancing the availability of contraceptives, creating awareness through media, and training and increasing the number of human resource to cope with the challenge of growing population.

It was agreed that the provincial governments would proactively engage ulema, khateebs and religious leaders to promote healthy family norms in the country.

Addressing the meeting, the President said that ulema and media had played exceptional role in creating awareness against COVID-19, adding that they could also play an instrumental role in educating the people about the implications of burgeoning population in their Friday sermons and talk shows.

Minister for Religious Affairs Pir Noor-ul-Haq Qadri said that rapidly growing population was the greatest challenge facing the country and it could only be overcome with the active support of ulema, media and civil society.

Minister for Religious Affairs Pir Noor-ul-Haq Qadri, Special Assistant to PM (SAPM) for Social Protection and Poverty Alleviation Dr Sania Nishtar, SAPM for National Health Services, Regulations and Coordination (NHSRC) Dr Faisal Sultan, Chairman Council of Islamic Ideology (CII) Dr Qibla Ayaz, Minister for Population Welfare KP Ahmed Hussain Shah, Secretary NHSRC Amir Ashraf Khawaja, Chief Secretary Sindh Syed Mumtaz Ali Shah, Chief Secretary KP Dr Kazim Niaz, Secretary Population Welfare Department of Punjab Ali Bahadur Qazi, Country Director Population Council Islamabad, Dr Zeba Sathar, Country Representative of UNFPA, technical experts and senior officials of the federal and provincial governments attended the meeting.