Cabinet approves three more MBS projects for Punjab

* Multan, Faisalabad, twin cities to also have state-of-the-art transport facility * Process of land record computerisation in 36 districts to be completed by December
Cabinet approves  three more MBS  projects for Punjab

LAHORE: The Punjab cabinet has given formal approval to the Multan, Faisalabad and Rawalpindi-Islamabad metro bus projects.
A meeting of Punjab cabinet was held under the chairmanship of Punjab Chief Minister Shahbaz Sharif here on Saturday. 
The foundation stone of the Rawalpindi-Islamabad metro bus project will be laid on February 28, while those in Multan and Faisalabad will be started by the end of the current year.
The cabinet also decided that the process of computerisation of land record under the Punjab Land Record Management Information System in 36 districts of the province would be completed by December 2014.
Provincial ministers, advisers, special assistants, chief secretary, Punjab Police inspector general, secretaries concerned and senior officials were also present at the meeting. 
Speaking on the occasion, Chief Minister Shahbaz Sharif said that after the success of the bus project in Lahore, the Punjab government had decided to launch Metro Bus Service (MBS) in three major cities of the province – Multan, Faisalabad and Rawalpindi.
He said that the Rawalpindi-Islamabad project would be completed in 11 months, while those in Multan and Faisalabad would be executed in a period of 10 months.
The Rawalpindi-Islamabad MBS project would start from Flashman’s Hotel and go up to Islamabad Secretariat, he said, adding that 8.6km route of the metro bus in Rawalpindi would be elevated, while the remaining 14.6km route in Islamabad would be at grade.
The project would cost a total amount of Rs 38 billion and more than 150,000 people would avail the comfortable, economical and speedy transport facility every day, he said. 
According to the plan, 60 metro buses would ply on the Rawalpindi-Islamabad route.
The chief minister said that the Rawalpindi-Islamabad project would be completed speedily, transparently and within the timeframe. He said that all projects of metro bus would be a masterpiece of standard and transparency.
He said that effective planning should be made for maintaining the flow of traffic during the execution of the Rawalpindi-Islamabad MBS project and special attention paid to the convenience of the people. 
He further directed the officials concerned that the process of acquisition of land be completed in a transparent manner.
Shahbaz Sharif issued instructions for formation of a committee under the chairmanship of the Punjab chief secretary and directed that the committee should supervise the process of acquisition of land and payment of compensation by visiting Rawalpindi twice a month. 
He said that work would be carried out round-the-clock for the completion of the project within the stipulated period. 
He said that metro bus projects in Multan and Faisalabad would be carried out on the pattern of the metro system of Dubai, and started during the current year.
The chief minister further said that the Land Record Management Information System (LRMIS) was of vital importance, as it would rid the people of the corrupt ‘Patwar’ culture. He said that this system would result in provision of ownership deeds to the citizens within 50 minutes.
He said that the process of land record computerisation would be completed in 24 districts of the province by June 2014 and the remaining 12 by December 2014.
The chief minister directed the officials concerned to evolve an independent evaluation system for the land record computerisation project and said that it would help improve the efficiency of the LRMIS. He said that a sum of Rs 14 billion was being spent on the land record computerisation project, which would also go a long way in resolving land disputes.
The chief minister directed them to form district committees comprising ministers and assembly members of the same districts where service centres had been completed in tehsils to monitor their performance. 
He further said that the process of recruitment of the staff for the project should be completed in a “100-per cent transparent manner”.
He directed the authorities concerned to finish the land record computerisation project within the stipulated period at any cost. He said that commissioners, DCOs and revenue officers should complete the process of land record computerisation as early as possible as no delay would be tolerated in this regard and stern action taken against the officers failing to achieve the target. 
Shahbaz Sharif said that on the pattern of the land record computerisation project, a comprehensive programme should be also evolved to computerise police stations and rapid progress be made in this direction.
The CM said that resolving the energy crisis was a big challenge, however, the government was implementing a comprehensive strategy to deal with this problem. He said that the Punjab government had devised a comprehensive programme of generation of electricity from coal and six sites had been selected for installation of coal-fired power plants.
He said that local and foreign investors would be extended special facilities for setting up coal power plants. 
He said that the Punjab government would set up two coal-based power plants of 660 megawatts in Sahiwal. He said that electricity was of fundamental importance for economic development as well as agriculture and industrial sectors, besides generation of job opportunities; therefore, the Punjab government was itself coming forward in this sector.
He said that Quaid-i-Azam Solar Park was being set up over 10,000 acres of land in Bahawalpur where the Punjab government would establish a 100-megawatt solar plant with its own resources and its feasibility had been prepared. He said that this project would be completed during the current year.

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