Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif Thursday called upon his political opponents to stop telling lies on a daily basis, and not to hinder the way of country’s economic development. “Some politicians tell lies on a daily basis.
There is no break for them, they hurl dirty accusations, which have no basis and truth. This nation is progressing. Don’t hinder the way of this development,” he said while speaking at the launching ceremony of PM’s National Health Programme here.
The prime minister said owing to his government’s prudent policies over the last three and half years, the backbone of terrorists had been broken, electricity load shedding had been curtailed to a large extent and Pakistan had been put on the course of development.
With inflation on the downward trend, stock market included in the world’s best performing stock markets, Pakistan’s economy was expected to grow at around 5.5 per cent during this fiscal year (2016-17), he added.
The prime minister said Pakistan’s economic performance was also being recognised by the world. “If you cannot assist us in this development, at least stop creating hurdles,” he remarked with reference to his political opponents. He, however, added, “people have become much aware about national affairs; can judge the truth and lie; and cannot be deceived by telling lies.”
Nawaz Sharif said, when he took over in 2013, the country was facing various challenges such as severe electricity shortage and the menace of terrorism. “In 2013, there were street protests due to 16 to 18 hours electricity load shedding,” he said, adding, “the present government has checked this problem to a large extent over the last three years and was working to hard to completely eliminate load shedding by 2018.” Similarly, the prime minister said, the backbone of terrorists had been broken and the menace of terrorism had been checked.
Prime Minister Muhammad Nawaz Sharif said he was very happy to visit Narowal this time around, as he had come for a noble cause of launching the National Health Programme for the under-privileged segments of this area. “I have long been wishing to do something for the poor segments of society, who cannot afford to get them treated even for minor ailments what to talk of major diseases like cancer, heart problems etc.,” he added.
The prime minister said 160,000 families of Narowal were being provided with NHP (National Health Programme) cards, which would help them getting free medical care in public &/ private hospitals. “Poor people sell their properties for medical treatment; even have to borrow due to lack of required amounts; and cannot afford education of their children, who have to do petty jobs for their survival. These are injustices and inequalities of our society, which we have to address,” he remarked.
He said, “this country is like a family in which everyone should have equal rights. If there is any problem in a house, we have to address it”. He thanked all those including his daughter Maryam Nawaz, Minister of State for Health Saira Afzal Tarar, Chief Minister Punjab and others for assisting him in the successful launching of the NHP in Narowal and other areas.
The prime minister said, under the national health programme the government would provide 250,000 per annum as medical cover for a poor family, adding, however, if the amount did not cater to the need, in case of major disease, more funds would be made available from Baitul Mall.
He said his daughter Maryam Nawaz was taking lot of interest in the NHP and had knowledge and statistics about the beneficiaries of it. Quoting Maryam Nawaz, he said a 52-year-old man, who was working on a tea stall to feed his family and suffered from the heart ailment – Angine Class-3 – , got himself treated under the NHP Card, and recovered. Similarly, he said, another poor person, Sharif Khan, who was suffering from cancer and was disappointed due to lack of money, was getting free treatment under the NHP Card in Shifa International Hospital and was recovering.
“His NHP card has been extended to cover extra expenditures required for the treatment,” he added. The prime minister said thousands of people from across the country were getting free medical treatment under this programme. “This Pakistan is our home. Everyone including me are its member. We have to help each other,” he remarked. Nawaz Sharif said this programme would be extended to the whole of Pakistan.
He also advised the Minister of State for Health and other concerned people to also visit the hospital and even homes to meet the beneficiaries of this programme. He, on this occasion, also announced the construction of a link road from Narowal to Badomali, to connect Narowal with Lahore-Sialkot Motorway. The work on this motorway would start very soon, he added.
The prime minister vowed to continue to serve the masses and take Pakistan forward. The prime minister on this occasion also distributed the NHP Cards among the registered persons. Minister of National Health Services Regulations and Co-ordination Saira Afzal Tarar said the PML-N government was fulfilling all its promises made with the people during election campaign. She said the PM’s Health Insurance Scheme was culmination of a dream and a unique programme of its kind in the world.
She said poor segments of the society had been targeted in it, adding that it was a pro-women programme which would help reduce child and mother mortality rate in the country. She said the programme was being monitored with the help of NADRA to make it transparent. Tarar said the programme had been launched for the entire Pakistan but unfortunately two provinces were still not part of it. She invited the two provinces to come forward and put its share in this noble cause.
Minister for Planning and Development Ahsan Iqbal said the people of Narowal always stood with the PML-N and in the 2013 general elections they elected 100 percent PML-N’s candidates. He said when the PML-N took reign of power in 2013, Pakistan was confronted with multiple problems and challenges but due to sagacious policies of the government the country had been put on the road to progress.
He said the international financial institutions were praising Pakistan’s economic growth and policies and one of the leading financial journal Economist has included Pakistan in the five growing economies of the world, adding that all this was possible due to sagacious policies of Prime Minister Muhammad Nawaz Sharif.
He said this programme was a great step by present govt/ towards making Pakistan a welfare state. He said the PM’s Health Insurance Scheme had been launched for those people of the society who were living below the poverty line, adding that under this scheme the poor segments of the society had been able to get standard health care.
Ahsan Iqbal lauded efforts of the prime minister in fields of education and health and requested him to issue order for conducting a survey of the widows and orphan children in the country and the government should take care of them. Punjab Health Minister Khawaja Salman Rafiq said 3.5 million people would be benefited in district Rahim Yar Khan from this programme. Punjab Finance Minister Dr Ayesha Ghaus Pasha said the government had fulfilled its another promise with the people.
She said 525,000 families would get benefit from this scheme in district Rahim Yar Khan. She said in district Khanewal 231,000 families or 924,000 individuals were getting benefit from this programme which was a proof of the prime minister’s and Punjab chief minister’s vision of health. She said the PM’s NHP would be rolled out in other districts of Punjab during this year.