The successful execution of Ehsaas emergency cash assistance programme helped Pakistan to successfully avert any civil war-like situation last year in the wake of anti-coronavirus lockdown imposed in the country rendering almost two-third part of its population jobless. “Almost the two-third portion of the Pakistani population, which is associated with the non-formal sector and earn their income on a daily basis, were deprived of their livelihood resources when anti-coronavirus lockdown was imposed in the country last year,” said the Prime Minister’s Special Assistant on Poverty Alleviation and Social Protection, Dr Sania Nishtar, as she inaugurated 13th International CSR Summit and Awards-2021 organised by the National Forum for Environment and Health (NFEH) here at a hotel on Thursday. Dr Nishtar said that any undesirable situation could have emerged in the country as these underprivileged people after being rendered jobless and penniless had been sitting at the railway and bus stations as they intended to go back to their far-flung native areas. She said that in such precarious times the Ehsaas emergency cash assistance programme had been rolled out in the country to save the two-third part of its population from utter crash. “I’m glad that almost half of the population of our country that is the fifth most populous nation in the world gets benefited from this programme,” said the PM’s Special Assistant. She recalled that the offices of the Ehsaas programme had remained open to dispense the emergency cash assistance programme when almost all the government’s ministries and institutions were closed as a part of the lockdown measures. Dr Nishtar said that all the due government’s rules, regulations, and formalities had been completely adhered to by the Ehsaas programme to provide the deprived masses with emergency cash assistance. She emphasised the corporate entities in the country to give as much honour to the needy population as was given to their consumers while executing their initiatives related to the Corporate Social Responsibility. “Doing so is like the solemn obligation of the corporate entities while acting upon their CSR programmes,” she added. Also speaking at the inaugural ceremony, Chairman of National Electric Power Regulatory Authority, Tauseef H Farooqui, said the NEPRA had strictly adopted standard operating procedures last year against the coronavirus due to which no fatality was reported among the employees of the power sector regulator. He said the NEPRA regulated the affairs of some 300 power sector companies in the country as since last year the power sector regulator had encouraged to adopt CSR initiatives to help out the needy population in the country. He said that different energy companies after being motivated by the NEPRA had introduced their CSR programmes mainly to benefit the deprived people around the area where their operations are based. Dr Amjad Saqib, Founder of the Akhuwat Foundation said the importance of entrepreneurship had increased manifold to tackle the adverse economic impacts of the coronavirus pandemic. He said the entrepreneurship had to be exercised along with the element of latest technology to overcome the economic setback caused by the Covid-19 lockdown. He said the equitable distribution of resources and the concept of social inclusion had to be adopted to help out the disadvantaged population especially during the pandemic. MNA Syma Nadeem informed the audience about the efforts of the present government to achieve sustainable development goals with support from the private sector and non-governmental organisations. She urged the corporate entities to come forward and adopt the programmes introduced to meet the fundamental needs of the faraway rural areas. NFEH President Naeem Qureshi said that CSR Summit and Awards held every year provided the opportunity to properly recognise the outstanding services of the corporate sector to help out the deprived people in the country. He said the summit also provided the platform to combine the resources of the corporate sector and charities to work for the greater good of Pakistan.