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LAHORE: In the absence of opposition Punjab Assembly on Wednesday passed Finance Bill 2022 and thus approved the budget worth Rs3.226 trillion for the financial year 2022-23. Provincial Minister Sardar Awais Laghari moved the bill when the House proceedings began two hours 51 minutes behind its scheduled time.

Chief Minister Hamza Shehbaz Sharif was also present at that time whose arrival was greeted by treasury members by thumping of desks. Speaking on the floor of the House, Provincial Minister Sardar Awais Laghari said the government is focusing on upgrading infrastructure in educational institutes which includes improvement of human resource in colleges and infrastructure of schools. The protection of employees will be the top priority of the government. There is no future of the 14000 employees recruited by the PTI government in their tenure.

He also said the PML(N) government will ensure provision of health facilities to the people of Punjab. The provision of medicines was an important part of the budget. The government will provide best facilities in Basic Health Units and Tehsil Health Quarter hospitals. He said the PTI government had destroyed the transport system as well as roads. The government has allocated Rs55 billion for the uplift of roads adding that 150 new roads will be constructed in the province.

Awais said the government will focus on promoting green energy. This will reduce our dependence on imported fuel. He said the rising population is the biggest threat. The government will focus on artificial intelligence in the IT sector. The government has raised pension by 10 percent. PML(N) government will launch a women empowerment programme with a 40 percent increase.

He said the development budget will be Rs350 billion more if we are not under debt. The government will give Rs20 billion loan to the farmers. We will continue the journey of progress with the support of our allies.

Copyright Business Recorder, 2022

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