KARACHI                 -                Transport Minister Syed Awais Shah called on Chief Minister Murad Ali Shah here on Sunday to discuss matters related to transporters amid the coronavirus lockdown.

During the meeting, Awais Shah apprised CM Murad about the reservations of the transporters and problems being faced by them during the COVID-19 lockdown. Murad Ali Shah directed the Sindh transport minister to formulate the Standard Operating Procedures (SOPs) for the resumption of public transport. “Government will resolve all reservations of transporters on a priority basis,” Murad assured transporters.

Awais Shah said that transporters fully cooperated with the government during the lockdown in the province due to coronavirus. He further said that SOPs would be formulated with the consultation of transporters for the resumption of public transport.

It may be noted that President Karachi Transport Ittehad Irshad Bukhari had given the ultimatum to the Sindh Government to relax the rules for them in the lockdown within three days. “We will wait for three days for Sindh Government’s decision, after then will park the vehicles on the roads,” Irshad Bukhari was quoted as saying.

On March 23, Sindh Transport Minister Awais Shah had ordered a ban on intra-city as well as inter-city public transport across the province.

Buses, taxis, rickshaws and online cab services were also suspended across the province. As the provincial minister had asked people to stay at home, the only means of transport left for citizens was private vehicles. Even then, only two people were allowed to travel in a vehicle together, or three in case of a medical emergency.

Dharejo demands federal govt to announce relief package for, traders

Sindh Minister for Industries & Commerce and Cooperative Department & Anti-Corruption Jam Ikramullah Dharejo has demanded the federal government to immediately announce a relief package for industries and traders affected by the lockdown so that these people can breathe a sigh of relief.

In a statement issued on Sunday, Jam Ikramullah Dharijo said it was the first federal cabinet in Pakistan’s history to have more unelected members than elected members. The federal government’s cabinet included 25 unelected people, which was surprising, he stated.

He further said that the words of the selected Prime Minister to limit his cabinet members from 18 to 20 were proving to be a bundle of lies today and these cabinet members were white elephants for the economy.

The Provincial said that all the claims of change of government turned out to be false. It seems that the army of ministers, ministers of state, special assistants, and advisers had been tasked with criticizing the Sindh government exclusively. He said that the nation was getting dire consequences of change.

He said that due to the effects of coronavirus, on the one hand, revenue was declining and on the other hand, the burden of the vast cabinet had been placed on the national economy. Instead of criticizing the Sindh government, the Karachi team of the selected Prime Minister should implement the Karachi Package and other announcements, he demanded.

Jam Ikramullah Dharejo said that the Sindh government had taken industrialists and traders on board and they all were on the same page. He said that the false allegations of extortion from industrialists and traders had been disclaimed by the industrialists and traders themselves and the negative propagandists had failed. He said that the federal government did not give any relief to the industrialists while industries and traders had been affected due to severe lockdown. The federal government should announce a package for them, he added.

The Provincial Minister said, “Sindh is at the forefront in the struggle against coronavirus. Other provinces, including the federal government, have also copied Sindh’s efforts in the coronavirus war as the Sindh government is providing relief to the people under a regular strategy and is also taking effective measures to prevent them from coronavirus.”