ISLAMABAD - A federal cabinet meeting chaired by Prime Minister Syed Yousuf Raza Gilani Wednesday approved Haj Policy and Plan 2012.

Federal Information Minister Qamar Zaman Kaira while briefing journalists after the cabinet meeting along with Religious Affairs Minister Syed Khurshid Shah said under the new Haj policy 1,79,210 Pakistanis would perform Haj this year under the 50 per cent quota each for private and government schemes. Three categories, Blue, Green and White had been specified for accommodation facilities for pilgrims in Makkah under the government Haj scheme.

Blue Category had been added as new one. The government would receive Haj application till May 10 and the applicants would be selected on first come first get basis while the pilgrims who performed Haj during last five years would not be eligible to proceed for the performance of this religious duty this year. The Haj expenditures had also been increased in the new Haj policy.

The Federal Cabinet considered and gave its approval for confirmation of the decisions taken by Economic Coordination Committee (ECC) in its meetings held on 6th and 12th April 2012. The cabinet decided that draft amendments in CDA Ordinance 1960 should be resubmitted before it as a legislative Bill and not as an ordinance.

The draft Bill, if approved by the cabinet will be presented before the Parliament for approval.

The meeting considered and accorded approval to initiate negotiations on Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) between Ministry of Finance and Industry, UAE and the Ministry of industries, Pakistan on developing industrial cooperation.

The meeting considered and accorded its approval for ratification of Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) between the Governments of India and Pakistan on Drugs Demand Reduction and the Prevention of Illicit Trafficking in Narcotics Drugs, Psychotropic Substances and Precursors Chemical and Related Matters.

Production Division gave a presentation for the Cabinet on the affairs of Pakistan Steel Mills.

It was decided that details of the bail out package would be approved after consultations of Finance Minister Hafiz Sheikh with new CEO of the Steel Mill nd Finance Minister had been directed to do so.