Islamabad (Web Desk): Prime Minister Imran Khan on Saturday launched relief programme for those who lost their jobs due to coronavirus pandemic.
Speaking at a ceremony of launching of a web portal for the second phase of the Ehsaas cash programme, the premier assured that the donations in PM's Relief Fund for Covid-19 will be transparently disbursed amongst the deserving families affected by the breakout of coronavirus.
Imran Khan said he will personally monitoring the relief fund and its details will be shared with the public after audit.
The PM said that the government will contribute four rupees for each rupee donated to the relief fund.
"Our aim is to reach out the maximum number of people during these testing times," The PM added.
Giving details of the web portal, PM Imran said those who have lost jobs due to lockdown can get themselves registered on the ehsaaslabour.nadra.gov.pk to get the assistance of Rs 12,000.
The PM asked the volunteers and Tiger Force to help these people get them registered on the website. He said the registered people will be scrutinised and the cash assistance will be given to the qualifying ones.
The premier said the cash assistance will be given totally on merit irrespective of the political affiliations of the recipients.
"Rs 81 billion have been disbursed under Ehsaas Emergency Cash Program to 6.8 million poor and deserving families over a period of three weeks," the PM said.
He said it is first time in the country's history that such a hefty amount has been disbursed in a short span of time. He added that the program would be taken forward.
Alluding to the opening of businesses in different parts of the world including New York, PM Imran said we have also decided to fully open the construction industry as it will provide job opportunities especially to the labourers. He said we have given unprecedented incentives to the construction industry.
The PM said that the government has also endeavoured to put minimum burden on the masses amidst coronavirus.
"We have substantially reduced the prices of petroleum products which are currently the lowest in the sub-continent. The provincial chief secretaries have been directed to ensure that the benefit of this decline in petroleum prices is also reflected in the prices of essential commodities," PM Khan said.
Prime Minister Imran Khan once again appealed to the people to demonstrate discipline and follow precautionary measures to support government's efforts to contain the spread of the virus. He said those testing positive for the disease should quarantine themselves in their homes.
Speaking on the occasion, Special Assistant to the Prime Minister (SAPM) on Poverty Alleviation and Social Protection Dr Sania Nishtar said Pakistan is the first developing country, which has given immediate relief to its citizens affected by Coronavirus pandemic.
Explaining process of registration with the web portal under Ehsaas Emergency Cash Programme, the SAPM said the second phase of the programme is focused on providing relief to labour class, who have lost their jobs due to ongoing lockdown amid coronavirus pandemic.
On this occasion, Minister for Industries and Production Hammad Azhar said the Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) government has taken concrete measures to provide relief to small businesses affected by the pandemic.
"The measures adopted by the government include reduction of the interest rate, unprecedented tax incentives for the construction sector and interest-free loan scheme for small businesses," Hammad Azhar said.
The minister expressed the confidence that the government would pay the electricity bills for up to three months for small businesses whose consumption was between five to 70 kilowatts of electricity per month.