KP cabinet approves mega relief food, construction, tourism packages


Staff Reporter


The provincial cabinet in its meeting chaired by Khyber Pakhtunkhwa (KP) Chief Minister Mahmood Khan here on Tuesday approved mega relief packages for ensuring food security and uplift of construction sectors in the wake of coronavirus pandemic. Briefing newsmen about the cabinet decisions, Special Assistant to the Chief Minister for Information and Local Government, Kamran Bangash said food department has been directed to ensure provision of flour to people at affordable prices. Under the relief package, he said 20kg flour bag would be provided to people on Rs860 and 40kg bag on Rs1475.
He said the cabinet has directed food department to prepare a comprehensive plan for food security on the basis of research work. The cabinet also approved Rs4 billion relief package for uplift of construction industry, he said, adding maximum relief had been provided in taxes including exemption of local council tax under the package. The relief to construction industry has been provided till June 30, 2021. The cabinet also exempted hotels and restaurants from registration license fee tax for one year as tourism sector had been badly affected by lockdown due to COVID-19.
Exploration fee under Antiquities Act 2016 has been significantly reduced to facilitate foreign investment in this key sector as province had a lot of potential in this regard. Bangash said the KP cabinet has approved public private partnerships act to facilitate investment in the province. Under the act, a high powered committee led by Chief Minister Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, representatives of Planning and Development Department, Law and others departments besides representatives of the investors party would be constituted to evaluate financial viability and others aspects of the project within a short time.
The Cabinet also directed expediting work on Accelerated Implementation Program (AIP) in merged districts to ensure its speedy development. To promote tourism, he said 85 guest houses of different departments were handed over to Tourism Department. The cabinet also approved to write Khatimul Nabièen with the name of the Holy Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) in the curriculum and directed Education Department to prepare a comprehensive plan for inclusion of ethical and social values besides science and technology in the curriculum.
The cabinet also decided to open all educational institutes including schools, colleges, universities, madaris, technical and commerce in the province from September 15 under SOPs. To facilitate students of far flung areas, the cabinet decided to open hostels with 30pc occupancy from September 15. Any education institution that found guilty of violating the SOPs would be closed, Bangash said. He said the CM Mahmood Khan had stressed the need for regulatory policy for all departments, adding all departments were directed to submit their two years performance to be shared with media. The cabinet also approved commission to probe alleged audio leakage of former Advisor Ajmal Wazir.

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