LAHORE - Punjab Chief Minister Shahbaz Sharif has said the first phase of payment of financial aid to the flood affectees has been completed in an efficient manner and a total of 83557 affected families have been provided assistance; Rs25,000 each.

Presiding over a high level meeting on Sunday, the chief minister lauded the efforts of provincial government, ministers, assembly members and administration in Punjab which had been hit by the worst flood of its history. He praised his government, saying that everybody contributing in rescue and relief was setting a noble example.

In the second phase of compensating the affectees for the damage to their houses and crops would be paid in 16 districts after a survey, while aid would also be extended to the people who have lost their means of livelihood, it was decided during the meeting.

Director General PDMA gave a detailed briefing to the participants regarding the method of payment of financial assistance to the flood affectees in the second phase under Khadim-e-Punjab Imdadi Package 2014. Shahbaz, on the occasion, said that the government had completed the process of payment of first installment to the calamity-hit people and more than two billion rupees have been spent for this purpose. He said that a third party audit would be conducted of the survey of damage to the houses and crops in the flood-hit areas. He also assured that the payment of financial assistance in the second phase would be made in a highly transparent and a speedy manner.

The CM further stated that the Punjab government had set an example of keeping its promise by compensating the calamity-hit people in a prompt manner and record time; which is in days. He affirmed that every penny of the public money was being spent on the flood-hit people in a transparent manner.

“World Bank, Asian Development Bank and UNDP have expressed their confidence in the survey conducted by Punjab government regarding flood losses,” he said. \The CM congratulated public representatives and provincial administrative teams over the expression of confidence by international institutions. Advisor on Health Kh Salman Rafique, MPA Ayesha Ghaus Pasha, Chief Secretary, Senior Member Board of Revenue, Chairman Planning and Development, IGP, Home and Information secretaries, Commissioner Lahore, Director General Nadra, President Bank of Punjab and others were present in the meeting.

Meanwhile: CM Shahbaz Sharif on Sunday said that the Punjab government would make recompense for the delay in the execution of mega energy projects, caused by the protest sit-ins in Islamabad.

Talking to assembly members of various districts, the chief minister said that power projects would be completed speedily He said that the elements, insincere to the country, were hampering the development activities. “180 million people of Pakistan have rejected the politics of protest and chaos,: he said, adding that the unity on national level was much needed to overcome the problems.

The Punjab government, he asserted, had diverted resources towards poor masses and an effective strategy had been adopted to bring the deprived segments into mainstream of development. He said that mega projects for the provision of basis amenities to the citizens were being completed speedily and in a transparent manner.  Assembly members, belonging to PML-N), paid tributes to chief minister for the steps he took for the masses of Punjab. They said that his efforts were gaining results and the progress made by the Punjab government was exemplary, compared to other provinces of the country. “Chief Minister Shahbaz Sharif has set records of public service,” they said.