Published On: Sat, Jan 11th, 2014
Published in Category: Government

Govt contemplating small planes for local routes: Sheikh Aftab

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ISLAMABAD: Minister of state for Parliamentary Affairs, Sheikh Aftab has said that government was mulling leasing of smaller planes for local routes, in order to resolve financial dilemma of PIA.

Responding to questions of parliamentarians, during Senate’s question hour on Friday, he deliberated that some local routes had been temporarily been suspended over losses, but after possible 2-month lease of 2 planes each from Turkey and Czech Republic on test basis , these routes might be re-opened.

The minister also disclosed that government was also reviewing legal issues regarding re-opening of U-tube computer portal, while PTA (Pakistan Telecommunications Authority) has been asked to abide by policy directives, and take necessary measures to control, eliminate objectionable material from being accessed; which being an impossible factor was also being debated with GOOGLE portal’s management for a possible version of local U-Tube.

The House was also informed by the minister that four companies had been hired to oversee BISP’s (Benazir Income Support Program) data survey, and who had been paid their more than Rs 2 billion. He also said that previous government had prepared no annual progress report of BISP.

Responding to Senators ‘ questions, state minister for trade, engineering, Engineering Khurrum Dastagir informed Senate that Pak-India trade netted $ 338 million in 2011’s exports , while imports stood at a little above than $ one billion; while exports dipped slightly in 2012-13, at $ 327 million , and imports registered a slight upward trend at $ 1.80 billion plus.

Minister for parliamentary affairs divulged that cellular operators distributed more than 130 million SIMs; out of which Mobilin accounted for 37.5 million, Ufone 25 million, Zong 23.34 million, Telenor 37.8 million, and Warid 12.7 million units.