- Imran says the money will be directly transferred to people from 17,000 areas in the country.
- The entire system of cash disbursement is transparent and free of any political or human interferrence: PM.
- The government has decided to open construction industry in the country from April 14.
(Karachi) Prime Minister Imran Khan has said that the government will start providing funds to deserving families from tomorrow (April 9) under the Ehsaas Cash Disbursement Programme. He added the money will be directly transferred to people from 17,000 areas in the country.
Briefing the nation on coronavirus situation in Islamabad on Wednesday, Imran said that more than 1.2 million people will benefit from the programme as Rs12,000 will be provided to each deserving family. "The data of Esaas programme has been taken from NADRA."
He maintained the entire system of distributing the funds is transparent and free of any political or human interferrence. The premier said that the biggest problem is how to provide relief to society's poor and weakest section.
Regarding the Corona Tigers Relief Force, he said the force has two main purposes: to identify people who are needy and to identify people who need to be put under quarantine.
"The force volunteers will try to locate people who are unable to register through SMS for the cash disbursement programme." He pointed out, "They will find out who has received assistance and who need assistance."
He added that the lockdown will only succeed if people are provided food at their doorsteps and the relief force would play an important role in this regard.
The prime minister said that the government has decided to open construction industry in the country from April 14.
He said that gathering of people in one place is a dangerous thing. "We can avoid getting into problems by social distancing."
Imran said, We have observed that people are not following restrictions in many places." He said that the coronavirus is "very dangerous" for the elderly and sick people.
The premier said that the disease would spread very fast if people refused to stay at home and urged them to stay at home for the sake of their elders.
"If this spreads faster, it would burden our healthcare system, we wouldn't have enough ventilators for people with respiratory diseases," he said. "Coronavirus will not go away in two or three weeks. It will take time for things to come back to normal," he highlighted.
He maintained that people assume they are immune to coronavirus which is wrong.
On the occasion, Special Assistant to PM on Social Protection and Poverty Alleviation Dr Sania Nishtar said that the federal government will engage provinces in the Ehsaas Cash Disbursement Programme.
She added the participation of all the four provinces is important for the success and effectiveness of the programme. "As part of the programme, Rs144 billion will be disbursed to the deserving families," she said.
"The cash disbursement programme is fully automated and digital and there is no human or political interference in it," she remarked.
National Disaster Management Authority (NDMA) Chairman Lt Gen Mohammad Afzal said that medical equipment to combat coronavirus will be sent to hospitals identified by the authority in the next three days.
He said the NDMA has been sending equipment and PPEs to the provinces.
Afzal said,"There is shortage of ventilators in international market but we are making efforts to procure more and more."