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Lahore

SC disposes of LDA city housing scheme case

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Chief Justice asks to reduce school fee

LAHORE: The Supreme Court (SC) today disposed of LDA City Housing Scheme case after it was assured that affectees would be given land.
The bench headed by Chief Justice Mian Saqib Nisar heard an application by DG LDA seeking permission for procurement and transfer of land for LDA city by the development partners. At the outset of proceedings, Provincial Minister for Housing, Mian Mehmoodur Rasheed, who was a member of the committee formed to ensure the provision of land or payment of compensation to the affectees of the housing scheme, appeared before the bench.
He submitted that the government was looking into the matter and devised a practical solution to the problem. He submitted that as many as 9000 persons had files of LDA city plots. So far, 58,000 kanals land had been acquired but it was in scattered form and the project could not be completed till acquiring the remaining land, he added.
However, the minister said Phase-I of the housing scheme could be developed on 13500 kanals land as 9000 kanals land had been acquired already whereas remaining 4500 kanals land could be acquired through development partners to adjust the affectees.
He submitted that the process would be completed in a few months. Subsequently, the bench disposed of the matter in the light of the statement made by the minister. On last hearing, the court had formed a committee which comprised provincial housing minister and others for resolution of the issue and sought a report within ten days.

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Economy

LCCI lauds financial reforms

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LAHORE: Lahore Chamber of Commerce & Industry (LCCI) today expressed positive feelings on Finance Amendments Bill-2019 saying that various proposals of LCCI had been accepted by the government.
While addressing a Press Conference, the LCCI President Almas Hyder said that measures announced in Finance Amendments Bill 2019 would support the industry. He said that measures for ease of doing business, elimination of withholding tax on banking transactions were longstanding demand of the LCCI. He said that removal or decrease in Regulatory Duty on 150 items would bring down the cost of doing business; discourage smuggling and enhance the competitiveness of the industry. Cost of doing business in Pakistan was higher because of the high rate of duties and taxes on industrial raw materials and machinery. Lowering the duties and taxes on essentials for industry would certainly boost the local industry and help exporters but the further reduction or elimination was needed, he added.
Almas Hyder said that reduction in bank tax rate for Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs) would support this vital sector of the economy. He said that the production of the car industry was fallen up to 30 percent because of the difference between filer and non-filer. Permitting non-filer to purchase vehicles would expand the size of the auto industry. Focus on better conditions for investment was good because investment always played the role of oxygen for the economy. Investment should be encouraged in all sectors of the economy, he urged. He said that reduction of tax on marriage halls and elimination of duty on newsprints were good measures, asserting that tax exemption facility to the industries in SEZs (Special Economic Zones) was a good step but the same facility should also be given to the industrial expansions. LCCI President said that tax exemption for the manufacturing of equipment for alternative energy would reduce dependence on traditional methods of power generation. He said that removal of super tax would give a boost to the manufacturing sector.
He was of the view that reforms in the stock market would give benefit to the investors at vast scale, and maintaining of current duty structure on the mobile phone was a good step. He said that elimination of withholding tax on banking transactions was the demand of the Lahore Chamber of Commerce & Industry and it would not only give a huge benefit to the business community but also help the development of banking sector. Almas Hyder further stated that zoning should be made for the establishment of new industries, he said and asserted that the announcement of the full and final regime for the industry was also a good step.

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Crime

4915 liters adulterated milk discarded

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LAHORE: Following the directions of the DG Punjab Food Authority (PFA), food safety teams of the authority inspected as many as 1544 vans containing milk on entrance and exit points and discarded 4915 liters adulterated milk on the spot in different cities in the province.
According to available information, the food safety teams of the PFA during inspection tested 1,88,961 liters milk in different cities and after the test, found 4915 liters milk adulterated with urea and other chemicals.
769 vans of milk in Lahore zone, 414 in Rawalpindi,273  in Multan and 88 in Muzzaffargarh were inspected. DG PFA Capt (R) Muhammad Usman said that adulterated milk was causing many diseases in adults and children.
He said that teams of the PFA would continue action against adulteration in milk and other edibles to ensure people could get pure and healthy food.

 

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Crime

PFA seals 4 food points, fines 5 eateries

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LAHORE: The Punjab Food Authority (PFA) has closed down four food businesses including two gutka shops, dairy farm and a kitchen of the renowned hotel for failing to meet hygiene working environment and selling gutka.
The action was taken against them during an operation against unhygienic food points, processing units and adulterators in the provincial metropolis here today. 
The PFA raided United Dairy Farm, located at Quaid-e-Azam Industrial Estate, and sealed it due to pathetic condition of premises, for doing a production of frozen dessert in open area, preserving expired packets of Desi Ghee, improper cleanliness arrangements of cold storage and non-compliance of the authority instructions.
A team of PFA also sealed a kitchen of Park Lane Hotel on MM Alam Road for not taking preventative measures to control pests, the presence of cockroaches in chicken and fixing dual expiry dates on products. The team also found expired jelly during the raid.
Moreover, food safety teams sealed Chaudhry Tobacco in Gajjumata and Raju Pan Shop in Mughalpura for selling gutka, doing business without medical certificates and poor personal hygiene. While the sale of gutka is strictly prohibited in Punjab.
Over minor violations, PFA imposed Rs 50,000 fine on Arcadian Cafe, Rs 35,000 fine on R1 Cash and Carry, Rs 25,000 fine in Manj YDA Cafeteria and Rs 5,000 fine on Toheed Store.
PFA Director General Captain (R) Muhammad Usman said that the purpose of food checking drive was to ensure the provision of healthy and safe food in Punjab.
He said that the teams are doing work affectionately in order to ensure the implementation of Punjab Pure Food Regulations. He further said that PFA will make Punjab’s land narrow for adulteration mafia.

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