Voice of the People


Articles and letters may be edited for the purposes of clarity and space. They are published in good faith with a view to enlightening all the stakeholders. However, the contents of these writings may not necessarily match the views of the newspaper.

Whither medical allowance?

I have read with great concern letters published in the newspapers on the title above regarding non-payment of Medical Allowance to Radio Pakistan’s serving and retired employees following replacement of their pay scales with the government scales by the incumbent federal government since July 2023.

I have many friends including the retired ones in Radio Pakistan Islamabad and visit them every now and then and am quite familiar with their financial and their problems which have been added now by non-payment of medical allowance for the last many months. I also know about irregular payment of salaries and pensions to Radio Pakistan’s serving and retired personnel for some months.

Without going into further not so pleasant details, I appeal to Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif and Federal Information and Broadcasting Marriyum Aurangzeb to look into the matter on a priority basis, taking some time off their other political and other commitments and other engagements.

The lady Minister in particular is requested to pay personal interest to the problems being faced by Radio Pakistan’s serving and retired employees irrespective of the bitter fact that Radio Pakistan continues to be very low in the federal government’s priorities as an audio visual medium as compared to top priority enjoyed by PTV as audio visual medium since its inception.

At least, Radio Pakistan’s serving and retired employees be paid their due Medical Allowance from January 2023 to help them to cope to some extent with ever-increasing higher cost of living as the country is passing through the worst-ever economic crisis of its politically chequered history. Hoping for a prompt and positive response from the worthy Prime Minister and the Federal Information Minister, please.



Benefits  of dams

A dam is a structure across a river or stream which stores water to keep water from flowing further. Dam is a barrier that stops the flow of surface water or underground streams. Ancient structures of dams include material like rocks and clay but modern dams use concrete material. Then dams create artificial lakes called reservoirs. These reservoirs not only stop the floods but also provide water for activities such as irrigation, for consumption of humans, electricity production and industrial use.

Firstly, the stored water of dams is very useful in the irrigation process. The whole agriculture uses this water through water supply. Agriculture is the backbone of economic development. Besides this, the humans also use this stored water through the water supply system. Secondly, the stored water in the dams is very beneficial in the electricity production and uses hydropower.

When water is released from the dam, it spins a tribune connected to a generator that produces electricity. This hydroelectric power is flexible, less costly, affordable and contains renewable resources. The most important benefit of dams is that they can produce constant electricity and require no fuel. Dams last longer than thermal power plants. Additionally, the hydropower can be stored.

One example of this is the 103800 megawatts of electricity produced by dams alone in the United States. Along with this, hydropower production is eco-friendly.

In contrast, the electricity from the thermal produces pollutants and toxic gases to the atmosphere which are contributing to the greenhouse gases. Hydropower does not use fuel and does not produce pollutant material or toxic gases. Thirdly, dams are also beneficial in industrial use.



MD IMF advice

What MD IMF Khristilina stressed upon was that Pakistan needs to protect the poor and tax the wealthy, ensuring targeted subsidies for the most deprived who live below the poverty line, should have been stated by leaders of PPP, PMLN, JUI, PTI etc., or the superior judiciary. This matter should have been raised in Parliament (NA/PA/Senate), by civil society or independent media. Ulema could have raised it, but they chose to focus on other issues, instead of the grave economic crisis the country and its citizens are faced with.

Earlier, the UN National Human Development Report (UNDP) submitted to former PM Imran Khan in April 2021 highlighted the inequality in annual expenditure and investment on the majority of 220 million citizens and the $17.4 billion impact of economic privileges accorded to affluent elite. No system of governance (capitalism or socialism) and even dictatorship can survive without a functional social welfare system and justice.

The Islamic Governance system is based on equality of all before the law, with equal opportunities for every citizen based on merit alone, and transparency and accountability of the ruling elite, who should be answerable to the public for state funds. Unfortunately, Pakistan liberated under leadership of Quaid-i-Azam to be a modern democratic welfare state with a constitution as supreme law was reduced by likes of Ayub etc., to a “State of the Elite, For the Elite and by the Elite”, instead of a “Nation of the people, by the people, for the people”.

From 2018 to 2022, except for political rhetoric and exploiting religion, the real estate and land developers were major beneficiaries such as the RUDA project in Lahore, where almost 72,000 acres of farm land and 12,000 acres of forest was forcibly occupied, just like over 44,000 acres in Sindh were allotted in 2015, which finally exceeded 80,000. Let us not forget BP 190 million given by the UK which was returned back to the criminal in Pakistan. This abuse, inequality and injustice cannot be sustained any longer and the State must address this before chaos erupts.