PESHAWAR: With the provincial government facing a cash crunch amid unpaid dues from the federal government and shrinking revenues, it has sought three per cent share in the national finance commission (NFC) award for development in the erstwhile federally administered tribal areas (Fata).
This was disclosed by the Adviser to the Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa (K-P) Chief Minister on Information Ajmal Wazir while briefing the media at the Civil Secretariat in the provincial capital on Wednesday.
During the recent meeting of the NEC, he said that the K-P government had demanded the three per cent share in the NFC award for the Newly Merged Tribal Districts (NMTDs).
The adviser said that K-P Governor Shah Farman and Chief Minister Mahmood Khan had briefed Prime Minister Imran Khan during the meeting that all the provinces had previously agreed to allocate three per cent share to the merged districts in the award.
However, Wazir said that now Sindh and Balochistan were showing their reluctance.
He said PM Imran then raised the issue with the Sindh and Balochistan to give the three per cent share in NFC as per their promise.
The premier further assured K-P of full cooperation from the federation for rapid development in the merged districts.
Regarding the novel coronavirus (Covid-19) situation, the provincial health department on Wednesday said that 679 new infections were detected in the past 24 hours with nine associated deaths. This took the province’s total to 15,206 cases and 619 associated deaths.
The information adviser said that they are working to enhance the capacity of hospitals in the province.
Talking about the artificial shortage of petroleum products, he said that the issue of petrol had been raised with the federal government. In this regard, he said that the K-P chief secretary was in touch with the petroleum secretary to address the issue of uninterrupted fuel supply.
CRBC deemed vital
Meanwhile, K-P Chief Minister Mahmood termed the proposed Chashma Right Bank Lift Canal Project (CRBC) project as of vital importance for achieving self-sufficiency in the agriculture sector of the province.
He has demanded that the federal government include the project in the upcoming Public Sector Development Programme (PSDP).
Mahmood said that the project is of equal importance for both K-P as well as for Punjab and upon completion, it will help irrigate millions of acres of barren land in both provinces.
It will also address the issue of wheat shortage in the province permanently.
Published in The Express Tribune, June 11th, 2020.
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