LAHORE: Prime Minister Imran Khan on Friday launched the distribution process of Naya Pakistan National Sehat Card among the entire population of Punjab province enabling every family to avail medical treatment of up to Rs1 million a year at both government and private hospitals.
At the launching ceremony, he praised the Chief Minister of Punjab Usman Buzdal, Minister of Health Yasmin Rashid and the entire team, and said that the Punjab government has followed the vision of its ancestors and is moving forward on the road to revitalize the country. . An Islamic welfare state.
Calling it a “revolutionary step”, the prime minister said, “neither everyone can take, nor any of the governments in the past took such a bold decision of providing Rs 1 million health insurance to the entire population.”
He said under the program 30 million families would benefit from the health insurance facility which would cost Rs 400 billion to the government. He said our forefathers had dreamed to make Pakistan an Islamic welfare state but unfortunately it could not be developed on that course.
Citing Madina State as first welfare state which fulfilled all basic responsibilities of its citizens, the prime minister said unfortunately, no such state was found in the Muslim world rather the Scandinavian states were close to that model.
Naming Denmark, Norway and Sweden, the prime minister said a state always believed in inclusive growth and had compassion for the weaker segment. He said any individual or nation abiding by the teachings of Allah Almighty would get His blessings.
He said all the Scandinavian countries did not have more resources than Pakistan but they were more prosperous by having adopted the model of a welfare state.
“Today, the Punjab government took such a step to put the country on the course of uplifting this nation… We want to make Pakistan for which it was established. If we don’t opt that course, it will be great treachery with the Indian Muslims who had voted for it,” he remarked.
He said that in the past, some leaders claimed to make Pakistan the tiger of Asia. This is by no means the idea of a welfare state like Medina.
The prime minister told the rally that time will tell that the Sehat Card initiative, which involves almost equal funds, will have better results than subway buses or orange trains. He said that all families in the province will receive the Sehat Card by March and have decided to replicate this model in Balochistan, Azad Kashmir and Gilgit-Baltistan.
The Prime Minister stated that the Sehat Card will promote the development of the province’s health infrastructure because it will attract the private sector to build hospitals in remote areas.
He said the government would close down the government hospitals in far-flung areas where the doctors did not want to be posted, to save the cost. He said the government would incentivize the private sector by allowing duty-free import of their equipment to expand the network of private hospitals.
The prime minister told the gathering that a silent revolution was in the making through the government’s initiative of housing construction loans by banks for the salaried class after the government removed all the impediments. He said the people had applied for loans worth Rs 260 billion out of which Rs 110 billion worth loans had been approved and Rs 34 billion disbursed already.
He said under Kamyab Pakistan Program, around 2 million people had been given interest-free loans for house building. Moreover, under the same program, a loan of Rs 0.5 million was also being given to the farmers and others to establish their own businesses.