Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif on Wednesday issued directives for the reinstatement of “eligible persons” that were removed from the beneficiary list of the Benazir Income Support Programme (BISP) by the PTI-led government. The premier issued these directives during a meeting with Federal Minister for Poverty Alleviation and Social Safety, Shazia Marri. The previous government had in December 2019 removed 820,165 names from the BISP database, describing the beneficiaries as “undeserving”. It was later also revealed by the PTI government that out of over 800,000 beneficiaries removed from the programme, more than 140,000 were those who either themselves or whose spouses were government employees. The changes in the BISP database were made in the wake of reservations expressed by some PTI cabinet members that the supporters of opposition parties, especially those backing the PPP, were benefiting from the programme, while those belonging to the PTI were being ignored. The BISP was launched in July 2008. During the meeting, PM Shehbaz welcomed a proposal from Marri to devise a procedure for making an appeal for the re-inclusion of those expelled from the BISP. He was also briefed by the minister on the proposed procedure of the appeal. Marri appreciated the prime minister for announcing assistance for the deserving people of Balochistan under the BISP and offering scholarships to students, besides extending financial support to the parents of female students.