Canadian delegation, Augustine discuss bilateral issues

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A two-member delegation of the Canadian High Commission called on Punjab Minister for Human Rights & Minorities Affairs Ijaz Alam Augustine on Friday. They discussed bilateral relations between two countries and other issues of mutual interests during the meeting.

Led by second secretary and vice-consul Junko Prefontaine, the delegation also included senior consular officer Faisal Javed Khokhar.

Matters of mutual interest including GSP Plus status, Pakistan-Canada relations, issues of the Canadian citizens in Pakistan, human rights and protection of religious minorities came under discussion during the meeting.

Ijaz Alam briefed the delegation about steps taken by the Punjab government for protection of rights of minorities and said the government was fully aware of its obligations. The Human Rights & Minorities Affairs department is monitoring issues relating to the protection of human rights, he added.

The provincial minister said that the European Union appreciated the efforts of the Punjab government and Pakistan has emerged as the symbol of peace and brotherhood under the leadership of PM Imran Khan.

A complaint cell has been set up to protect the rights of overseas Pakistanis in the office of IG Punjab. If Canadian citizens have any problem, they can bring it to the notice of the Human Rights department, he added.

The delegation applauded the efforts of the Punjab government for the protection of human rights and assured full cooperation to protect human rights. The minister presented human rights policy, three years progress reports and a book titled, ‘Our Diverse Land’ written by the department. The incharge of TT Cell Barrister Saeed Nasir and others were also present.

Meanwhile, The Punjab Provincial Development Working Party (PDWP) on Friday approved two development schemes of Public Building and Agriculture Sectors with an estimated cost of 4,620.278 million rupees.

Chairman Planning & Development Board Abdullah Khan Sumbal presided over the 40th meeting of the Provincial Development Working Party (PDWP) of the current fiscal year 2021-22 which gave approval of these schemes.

The approved development schemes included the Establishment of Revenue Academy, Lahore at the cost of Rs1,191.147 million and Promotion of High-Value Agriculture through Solarization of Drip & Sprinkler Irrigation System (SMART, DLI-4b) (Revised) at the cost of Rs3,429.131 million.

Provincial Secretary P&D Mujahid Sherdil, all Members of the Planning & Development Board, Provincial Secretaries of concerned departments, and other senior representatives of the relevant Provincial Departments also attended the meeting.

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