KALLAR SYEDAN: Prime Minister Imran Khan on Wednesday terming uplift of poor and underprivileged a ‘key responsibility of the government’ said the network of socio-welfare projects would be expanded to benefit the deserving populace amass. The Prime Minister, sitting under an old Banyan tree in a Rawalpindi’s remote area of Kallar Syedan along with the beneficiaries of Ehsaas Kifalat Programme, said the financial assistance was aimed at easing up the difficulties of deserving people. The Prime Minister’s visit to the outskirts of Rawalpindi was meant at reviewing the enrolment of new beneficiaries included in the second phase of the Ehsaas Kifalat program under the ongoing survey. In an informal interaction with beneficiaries belonging to the poorest of the poor section, Imran Khan assured that the government would extend them every possible support in areas of education, health, and housing. The Prime Minister expressed satisfaction that seven million households had been registered under Ehsaas Kifalat that would be given Rs 12,000 every six months. He said health cards with insurance up to Rs 0.7 million would be issued to people to lessen their burden of expensive medical treatment. Also, he said, under-graduate scholarships would be given to poor students to ensure their inclusion in the mainstream system. In the area of housing, the Prime Minister said the government had launched the construction of affordable residences under Naya Pakistan project. He mentioned that another upcoming project would offer rent of houses to be accommodated against the payment of instalments in the purchase of the constructed property. He said the government would provide Rs 10 billion as interest-free loans as house-building finance for deserving people. The Prime Minister said financial assistance would be given with a goal to help poor run small businesses to earn their livelihood. Prime Minister Imran Khan said transparency and merit would be ensured in the disbursement of cash under the Ehsaas socio-welfare programme. Prime Minister Imran Khan addressing an event of Ehsaas at Kallar Syedan, Rawalpindi He recalled that 30,000 non-deserving people were delisted from the Ehsaas lists, who had faked their identities as poor. He said nobody could raise a question on the transparency of Ehsaas programme, where the cash disbursement was made on a non-political basis. He mentioned that even more funds were given to Sindh due to poverty despite the fact that the province was not being run by his political party. PM’s Special Assistant on Social Protection and Poverty Alleviation Dr Sania Nishtar in a briefing to the Prime Minister said 70 per cent of the comprehensive Ehsaas survey had been completed, which would be finalized by June. She said all those that have been identified for enrollment through the new survey will be given Rs 2000 a month on a continuing basis, to assist them with their basic needs. She said 280,000 families would be sent SMS today informing them that they could collect Rs 12,000. Dr Nishtar assured that in line with the vision of Prime Minister Imran Khan, the principles of transparency, honesty and merit would be maintained in cash disbursement. Women beneficiaries of the programme namely Nasreen Bibi, Allah Rakhi, Amina Bibi and others on the occasion talked to Prime Minister Imran Khan and expressed gratitude that Ehsaas programme would prove helpful in mitigating their financial ordeal.