On Thursday, Minister for Information and Broadcasting Chaudhry Fawad Hussain maintained that Punjab Local Government Bill would be passed in the next few days to clear the way for holding the LG elections in the provinces. While talking with the media about the core committee meeting of Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf, he said the LG elections in Punjab would be held through Electronic Voting Machines (EVMs) as the relevant law has already been amended by the Punjab government. The government also took its allies in confidence as constructive talks had been held with them on the new structure of the upcoming LG election in the province. He said Local Government Elections were being held in 17 districts of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa on December 19. A total of 37,752 candidates will be taking part in the elections while a total of 689 candidates are in the run for the slot of village chairmen and tehsil mayors. Some 19,282 were vying for the neighborhood councils. Praising the decision of the Election Commission of Pakistan to constitute technical committees on the matters of EVMs, he said ECP is now moving in the right direction for holding the next election by EVM. The government was ready to assist the ECP in that regard. Brushing aside the reports that the upcoming elections would be costly, he said indeed the process of elections would become a bit cheaper as compared to past due to EVMs usage. He said Special Assistant to the Prime Minister on Poverty Alleviation and Social Welfare Dr Sania briefed the Core Committee on some important social welfare programmes. She briefed the forum on Ehsaas Programme and Rs 350 billion Sehat Insaf Card programme which would cover medical expenditures amounting to one million each of the entire population of Punjab. He said the government was convincing the Sindh government to join the federal government for starting such welfare programmes in Sindh but they were hesitant due to the absence of chances of receiving personal gains from the programme. He said the Balochistan government has agreed to join and contribute to the welfare programmes but Sindh has not yet agreed. He said the issue of inflation was discussed in the meeting and it was encouraging to note that the Sensitive Price Index has posted a decrease of 0.67 percent. The government was doing its utmost to minimize global inflation impacts. In the coming days, people would be provided relief. Answering a question, he said inflation was the result of devastating policies of previous governments and now people like former Prime Minister Shahid Khaqan Abbasi were shedding crocodile tears on the price hike. He invited Shahid Khaqan Abbasi to have a session with the Bureau of Statistics to understand their system of issuing figures about inflation. The opposition was the bunch of illiterate people as they were not well versed with current issues. Upto 40 percent increase in Sensitive Price Index (SPI) index was due to inflation records from Karachi. The erstwhile PML-N government of Shahid Khaqan Abbasi had left Rs157 billion debt. Criticizing opposition, he said the opposition was not ready to participate in the meetings of parliamentary parties (for Election Reforms).