CHIEF Minister Mian Shahbaz Sharif presided over a meeting here on Sunday to review the pace of progress of housing scheme Ashiana.

Addressing the meeting, the chief minister said low cost housing scheme Ashiana would realize the dream of low-income people of having their own house. He said that all basic amenities would be available in the scheme. He said Ashiana housing scheme had started from Lahore and a site closest to the City had been selected for this purpose. He said under the policy of Punjab government, the project of Ashiana housing scheme would be completed in a transparent manner and houses would be allotted through ballot.

Punjab Land Development Company Chairman Sheikh Allauddin said the welfare project Ashiana for the low-income people was being implemented expeditiously. He also informed about the pace of the project in Lahore and other cities.

Member Provincial Assembly and Chairman Punjab Land Development Company, Sh Allauddin and officers concerned were also present.

Shahbaz stresses tolerance, restraint: Shahbaz Sharif has said that Pakistan is facing serious challenges and there is a greater need for tolerance, brotherhood, restraint and unity now than ever before.

He said that it was imperative that collective efforts were made for the solution to the problems being faced by the country and he was ready to go to anyone for this purpose.

According to a handout, Shahbaz stated this while talking to assembly members here on Sunday.

He said Pakistan was facing terrorism and extremism and the aim of progress and prosperity could not be achieved without eliminating the menace. He said the whole nation would have to gather on a platform for the stability of the country and foiling the designs of those who were trying to create chaos.

The CM said nature had blessed Pakistan with vast resources but instead of developing indigenous resources during the last 63 years, reliance on foreign aid was preferred which had become a habit. He said the existing situation was that the country was under a heavy foreign debt. He said economic freedom was essential for political independence and it was possible only if rapid progress was made for achieving self-sufficiency.

The chief minister said there was a need for promoting austerity and elimination of corruption for national development. He said that it was time to adopt an effective system of accountability and in order to promote the culture of austerity the governments would have to lead by example.

He said that Punjab government was implementing a strategy for good governance and promotion of merit and simplicity while solid measures had been taken to root out corruption. He said non-developmental expenditure had been curtailed substantially and resources were being spent on the public welfare. He said democracy was aimed at serving people and the provincial government was following that mission under the leadership of PML-N chief Mian Nawaz Sharif.

Shahbaz asked the elected representatives to spare no effort for the solution to public problems and ensure timely and transparent completion of development projects. Those who met the Chief Minister included Dr Saeed Elahi, Mian Muhammad Nauman and Khawaja Imran Nazir.