BISP funds can be used in better way

LAUNCHED in the last government of Pakistan People’s Party, Benazir Income Support Programme (BISP) over the years has truly emerged as a model social safety net programme for the world to follow. Different world personalities have also recognized its success to reaching out to millions of poor families and its contribution to the socio-economic uplift of the previously neglected women folk.
Since the installation of the present government, it has significantly enhanced allocations for the BISP raising it to Rs 110 billion over the last three years. Speaking in Dera Murad Jamali on Wednesday, BISP Chairperson Marvi Memon announced enhancement in the stipend of BISP beneficiaries saying that on the instructions of the Prime Minister, the three month stipend for poor families has been enhanced to Rs 4700 from Rs 4500. We welcome this increase in stipend but at the same time will highlight the fact that the amount is very negligible given the soaring prices of essential commodities. In fact, this stipend or the assistance being provided by other poverty alleviation programmes like Baitul Maal do provide some sort of temporary relief to the disadvantaged segments of the society but do not bring any long term change in their economic health. We also understand the financial constraints of the government and providing billions of rupees to this mega project is indeed an uphill task. Therefore, we will suggest the government to also allocate funds towards arranging such training programmes for the poor people that they could start earning their livelihood in a matter of one or two years and live a respectable life. This will also help bring down our poverty ratio in real sense which currently stands at alarming level. In addition there is also need to cleanse the BISP from the illegal and non-deserving beneficiaries. As the BISP dynamic chairperson Marvi Memon has announced to re-conduct the poverty survey, we expect that best international and modern techniques will be used in the compilation of data in order to ensure that the money of tax payers only reach the deserving families.

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