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ISLAMABAD: Prime Minister (PM) of Azad Jammu and Kashmir (AJK) Chaudhry Anwarul Haq has announced that the state government has accepted all demands of the Awami Action Committee (AAC).

Addressing a press conference here on Monday, Haq said two different notifications have been issued immediately following intervention of Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif.

He said that the government has announced subsidy in prices of flour and electricity immediately after the federal government approved the release of 23 billion rupees from the national exchequer to solve the issue.

He thanked Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif for his keenness in resolving the issue amicably and ordering the prompt issuance of notifications.

AJK: President, PM for resolving issues through dialogue

The AJK prime minister thanked the federal government for enduring a burden of Rs23 billion on the national exchequer with an open heart for the sake of the people of Azad Kashmir.

The government of AJK held various rounds of talks with the leadership of the AAC in the past one year which shows the government’s commitment and seriousness in resolving the problems being faced by the masses, he said.

He hoped that peace would be restored in the region after the implementation of the much-anticipated notifications.

As per the notification, the price of flour has been reduced from Rs3,100 to Rs2,000per 40 kilogram. Electricity prices will be Rs3 per unit for usage between 1-100 units, Rs5 per unit for usage between 101-300 units, and Rs6 per unit for the 300-above slab.

Commercial rates of electricity have been fixed at Rs10 per unit for 1-300 unit slab and Rs15 for 300 above slab has been fixed per unit.

“No one can reject two fundamental demands regarding cheap roti (bread) and electricity,” PM Haq said, while addressing a press conference in Islamabad on Monday, adding that PM Shehbaz Sharif assured of his all-out support to address issues of the AJK people.

He clarified that the government had neither the intention to disrupt peaceful struggle of the AJK people nor it would try to impact any such struggle in the future.

He said that the government exhibited tolerance and patience despite violations of the law and added that more than 100 policemen were wounded in violent clashes with the protesters, whereas, not a “single marcher was injured”.

He said that the AJK government would pay Rs10 million to the family of the martyred police officer and assured taking his killers to task as per law.

Terming the subsidies as a Pakistani government’s “special connection” with the region, Haq said that the top political and military leadership proved its concrete relationship and respect for the AJK people. He announced that Islamabad would provide Rs23 billion in funds to the AJK government.

He said that the provision of subsidies on power and wheat flour was not a solution to address the basic problems of the people but turning the state into a welfare state through devising and implementing people-friendly policies was.

He gave credit to Pakistan’s establishment and the army chief for taking a special interest in resolving the problems of the AJK people.

He further said that the notification would come into effect immediately and it was a permanent arrangement which would be part of the forthcoming budget for FY2024-25.

He said that the AJK government has significantly reduced the current expenditures since he has taken over, adding that during the past one year over Rs9 billion have been saved on account of current expenditures.

Copyright Business Recorder, 2024

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Aamir May 14, 2024 08:57am
So there is no writ of the state. Soon other provinces will follow suit and demand reductions by force of mass protests.
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KU May 14, 2024 10:47am
The “special connection” with the region cannot stop the corrupt? Rise in food items in connivance with administration were in news for the past one year, illegal forest logging is also patronised.
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