AIDS Patients Surpass 163,000 in the Country: NA told

ISLAMABAD, July 10 (Online Int’l): The National Assembly has been told that AIDS patients have surpassed 163,000 in the country and only 25,000 among them are registered while the government is evolving a comprehensive plan to curb the AIDS menace in the country.

At the inception of proceedings, Sardar Talib Nakai spoke on his calling attention notice, saying that excessive energy bills are being served to the agricultural consumers despite announcement of subsidy, He said that subsidy is not being provided to agricultural consumers against tube-well billing. Responding to the call attention notice, energy minister Omar Ayub Khan said that agriculture is very vital to our economy. The matter of  affording subsidy to tube wells will be resolved in consultation with the provinces. The Prime Minister has issued directives that we have to support the agriculture sector at every cost. The ministers for food and finance have been directed to make consultations with the provinces on the provision of subsidy to tube-wells. The PM has directed the finance ministry to work out a mechanism soon on this count. He said the farmers are being provided a subsidy of Rs 5.35 per unit. The Finance ministry and FBR are sorting out how and to whom the subsidy has to be allowed. Soon a formula will be framed in this regard.

Haji Faqir Ahmad said that the season  passes but a connection is not provided to the farming community. The federal minister said that we will frame a policy for providing electricity collection timely  to the farmers. The Speaker NA said that the farmers’ problem is vital and should be addressed. I am sending the matter of tube-wells and agricultural connections to the standing committee. He directed that the committee should find out a solution to this matter within 10 days.

PML-N MNA Maryam Aurangzeb tabled a calling attention notice on growing cases of AIDS in the country. Responding to it, parliamentary secretary Noushin Ahmad said that the past governments have not earmarked a single pie to deal with AIDS. Maryam Aurangzeb said that foreign funds come in connection with AIDS but the government has failed to form any policy. AIDS patients tally in Pakistan  has reached par with the Philippines.

Shaista Pervez Malik, MNA, said that the house should be told how many AIDS cases are caused due to  the use of drugs. The Parliamentary secretary told the house that an AIDS control policy has been worked out till  2030.

PPP MNA Nafeesa Shah said that apparently democracy is in place in the country but in fact dictatorship has held the country under its sway.  Restrictions have been clamped on the freedom of expression on different pretexts. Inhuman treatment is being meted out to Channel-24 and the journalists. We will raise it in the house. The government will have to take serious steps to address the problems facing the journalists.

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