Text Bulletin 1500 hrs
Prime Minister says the government's prudent economic policies have put Pakistan amongst the fastest growing economies of region.
National Assembly has passed a bill providing for compulsory teaching of Holy Quran in all educational institutions.
The 1180-magawatt Bhikki Power generation project is being inaugurated near Sheikhupura on Wednesday.
Supreme Court has adjourned the hearing of Mashaal Khan lynching case till 27th of this month.
Indian Supreme Court has directed to try L.K. Advani and other BJP leaders for criminal conspiracy in Babri Masjid demolition case.
Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif has said that the government is focused on institutional reforms, achieving good governance and rationalizing the taxation structure.
He was talking to President of Chinese E-Commerce Company in Islamabad on Wednesday.
He said that Pakistan has achieved economic stability over the last three years and is now amongst the fastest growing economies of the region.
He added that there has been unprecedented development of infrastructure along with a revolutionary expansion in IT and Telecommunications.
The head of the Chinese company said he has been very impressed to see how the use of IT and Telecommunications had grown in Pakistan and provides vital base for expansion of e-commerce in the country.
Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif is inaugurating the 1180-megawatt Bhikki Power generation project near Sheikhupura on Wednesday.
The project has been completed in a record eighteen months time while fifty billion rupees saved due to transparent tendering.
Minister for Water and Power Khawaja Asif has announced that the current power crisis will be overcomed in the next eight to ten days.
Responding to a calling attention notice in the National Assembly on Wednesday on prolonged power outages, he said supply situation will gradually start improving from on Thursday.
Khawaja Asif said some power plants of 2200 megawatts are closed for the maintenance purpose.
He said there will be no unannounced load shedding after the 1st of next month.
The Minister said that a power plant of 760 megawatt is being inaugurated in Sheikhupura on Wednesday. He said currently the country is facing power shortfall of 5200 megawatt while 6400 megawatt of power will be added to national grid by the end of this year.
During the question hour, Adviser on Foreign Affairs Sartaj Aziz told the House that our missions abroad are continuously engaged in projecting soft image of Pakistan.
He said the comprehensive operation Zarb-e-Azb against terrorists has yielded very positive results.
He said extensive measures are being taken to develop a national narrative to counter violent extremism.
Responding to a question, Minister for Commerce Khurram Dastgir told the house that rice export is witnessing growth and efforts are being made to find new markets for Pakistani rice.
He said the country's trade deficit stands at twenty three billion dollars and the State Bank of Pakistan has taken steps to discourage import of luxury items to reduce deficit.
Parliamentary Secretary for Ministry of States and Frontier Regions Shaheen Shafique told the House that over five point two billion rupees have been disbursed as compensation amongst the terrorism affected people in tribal areas.
He said the government is providing four hundred thousand rupees to fully damaged and one hundred and sixty thousand rupees for partially damaged houses.
Responding to a question, she said a total of 1076 schemes have reportedly been completed out of FATA Annual Development Plan during the last four years.
The parliamentary secretary said that the government has also undertaken several other projects for the welfare of tribal people.
The House passed the Compulsory Teaching of the Holy Quran Bill 2017.
The bill moved by Minister of State for Education Baligh-ur-Rehman provides for making compulsory teaching of the Holy Quran to Muslim students in all educational institutions.
Speaking on the bill, Minister of State for Education Baligh-ur-Rehman said under the bill, students from grade one to grade five will be taught Nazra Quran while simple translation of Quran will be taught to the students from grade 6 to intermediate.
He clarified that the legislation is only meant for the Muslim students.
The House will now meet on Thursday at 10.30.
Speaker National Assembly Sardar Ayaz Sadiq has asked media to help project positive and soft image of Pakistan.
He was speaking at a ceremony to administer oath to the newly elected office-bearers of Parliamentary Reporters Association at Parliament House in Islamabad on Wednesday.
Sardar Ayaz Sadiq said the problems facing Reporters covering the parliament would be resolved with the cooperation of all relevant departments.
President Mamnoon Hussain has called for finding ways to benefit from South Africa’s strong manufacturing and technological base and its expertise in high-end industrial production.
He was talking to High Commissioner-designate of Pakistan to South Africa Dr. Sohail Khan in Islamabad on Wednesday.
The President emphasized the High Commissioner to focus on enhancing bilateral trade with South Africa and project soft image of the country.
President Mamnoon Hussain also called for expanding Pakistan’s economic relations with other concurrently accredited countries of Africa.
Ambassador of Iran to Pakistan Mehdi Honardoost called on Chief of Army Staff General Qamar Javed Bajwa in Rawalpindi on Wednesday.
They discussed the evolving regional security matrix and other issues of mutual interest including measures against common threat of terrorism.
The Army Chief said that Pakistan greatly values historic Pak-Iran relationship and the same shall continue based on mutual trust and respect for each other’s interests.
Supreme Court will announce its verdict in the Panama papers Case on Thursday afternoon.
The verdict was reserved by the Apex court on 23rd February this year.
The case was heard by a 5-member bench headed by Justice Asif Saeed Khosa.
Supreme Court has adjourned the hearing of suo motto case in the lynching of the student of Abdul Wali Khan University Mardan, Mashaal Khan, till 27th of this month.
A three-member bench of the court, headed by Chief Justice, Justice Saqib Nisar heard the case.
The court restrained Peshawar High Court from constituting a judicial commission.
In his remarks, the Chief Justice said he has no words to express deep shock and grief over the incident. He directed that investigation into the case must not be restricted to recording of statements alone.
On the other hand, eight accused arrested in connection with the murder of Mashaal Khan were produced in Anti-Terrorism Court Mardan on Wednesday.
The judge sent the accused on fourteen-day judicial remand.
Another accused in the murder of Mashaal Khan was arrested in Charsadda on Wednesday.
Meanwhile, the administration of Abdul Wali Khan University Mardan has suspended its seven employees who have been nominated in the FIR in the murder of a student, Mashaal Khan.
The Indian Supreme Court announced its decision in Babri Masjid demolition case on Wednesday.
The court ruled that former Indian Home Minister LK Advani and other BJP leaders, including Murli Manohar Joshi and Uma Bharti, will be tried for criminal conspiracy in the case.
The court directed to start proceeding in the case within four weeks.
The Apex court gave the verdict in a CBI appeal against the judgment of Allahabad High Court in the case.
Radio Pakistan will broadcast in its National Hook-up at 1605 hours on Wednesday a Special Feature Programme in connection with the Death Anniversary of Renowned Drama Writer "Syed Imtiaz Ali Taj".