Cabinet meeting okays merger of Sindh Leasing Company with Sindh Bank

Irfan Aligi

Karachi. Nov 26, 2019: The Sindh Cabinet meeting held under the chairmanship of Sindh Chief Minister (CM) Syed Murad Ali Shah approved allotment of 5801 acres of land to 10 private firms and National Transmission and Dispatch Company (NTDC) on 30 years lease to install renewable power plants and National Grid Station under the guidance of the Supreme Court of Pakistan.

The allotment of 5801 acres of land to 10 power companies, including NTDC would fetch Rs9.13 billion in the provincial exchequer.  

The cabinet also allowed the planters of renewable power plant to install others power plant, if the desire so subject to the fulfillment of government requirements and clearance of lease money.

Minister Energy Imtiaz Shaikh told the cabinet that 10 renewable power companies, wind and solar, and NTDC have applied for allotment of land measuring 5801 acres for installation of wind and solar projects in three districts, Thatta, Dadu and Jamshoro. He said that seven projects would be installed in Thatta district one, in Dadu and other one in Jamshoro. The concerned deputy commissioners have reported availability of land and have also suggested annual lease money at a rate of RS3000, Rs5000 and Rs8000 per acre per annum for different catagories of land.

Senior member BOR Kazi Shahid Parvez told the cabinet that the land could be allotted as per guidance of the Supreme Court. The cabinet approved the allotment of land and directed SMBR to make necessary arrangements.     

The cabinet meeting held at New Sindh Secretariat on Tuesday was attended by Chief Secretary Mumtaz Shah, provincial ministers, advisors and concerned officers.

Sindh Bank: Secretary Finance Hassan Naqvi told the cabinet that the Sindh Bank faced a substantial shortfall in capital and the Capital Adequacy Ratio (CAR) which is a ratio of the risk weighted assets/loan of the bank, deteriorated. 

The Sindh cabinet keeping in view the situation, decided to inject Rs14.7 billion in Sindh Bank, against which the provincial government has injected Rs9.7 billion. The cabinet approved another tranche of Rs2 billion to inject in Sindh Bank and merged Sindh Leasing Company into 

The bank which has a cash of Rs3 billion in its accounts. 

The President Sindh bank Imran Samad told the cabinet that the Sindh Bank account have improved from Rs14.5 billion to Rs18 billion. According to state bank requirement the Capital Adequacy Ratio (CAR) of the bank should be at least 11.90 percent and now the Sindh bank’s CAR has reached to 16.65 percent. This showed that the financial strength of the bank has improved considerably. The cabinet was informed that the bank has recovered Rs90.30 million band loans. Therefore, the cabinet allowed the bank to advance bank loans to its employees 

The cabinet was also informed that Sindh Micro Fiance Bank (SMFB) has advanced small loans of Rs2.2 billion to impoverished women to launch their small businesses. The SMFB was running in profit. Therefore, the Sindh cabinet withdrew the consideration of merging SMFB into Sindh bank.

The cabinet also approved a proposal under which all the Sindh government departments, subordinate organizations and institutions would deposit their accounts, including salary accounts in Sindh Bank. Onward all grants to public or private institutions would be given on the condition that they would maintain an account in Sindh Bank, particularly as far as Sindh government finances were concerned.  

SHEC: The department of University & Board presented an amendment in the Sindh Higher Education Commission Employees (Recruitment) Rules 2014 under which all posts, including the post of secretary/executive director was to be made open to civil servants as well as people from academia background from open market. The cabinet, in principle approved the amendment in rules but simultaneously directed secretary (U&B) to work out detailed salaries packages, pays scales and other benefits of the employees to be posted in high education commission. 

Ban on recruitment in universities: The cabinet also noted seriously that on the one hand universities, under the control of provincial government, were making hue and cry for shortage of funds and on the other they were making recruitments continuously. The Cabinet through secretary (Universities & Boards) issued directives to the universities to stop recruitment till their financial strength was improved. However, necessary recruitments could be made with the approval of the government.  

Archives: The Sindh cabinet was told that the nature of work of culture, Antiquities, Heritage, Archaeology and Archives have similar nature. The Directorate of Archives and Culture department were part of Education department in 1976. Later, the culture department was created as a separate department but Directorate of Archives remained part of education department and then transferred to Information department. The job of Directorate of Archives is to preserve old scripts, books and such other old record which is very similar to the work of Culture department. Therefore, the cabinet carved out Directorate of Archives from Information department and transferred to Culture department.  

SLA: The cabinet discussed and approved the rules of Sindhi Language Authority which include Sindhi Language Authority (Constitution, Powers and Functions) Rules, Sindhi Language Authority Employees (Services) Rules, 2019. 

The cabinet directed Culture department to prepare packages and salary structure of the employees and include them in the rules.

SBCA Court: The cabinet was told that Sindh Building Control Authority was engaged in continuous drive against illegal buildings whereby four to five demolition of illegal buildings were carried out daily. 

As a procedure, FIRs are registered in the SBCA police station. The FIRs are disposed off y the judicial magistrate. The prosecution cases under SBCA law are also being filed at relevant courts. Therefore, special SBCA courts may be established. 

The cabinet approved the establishment of the courts and directed local government department to start setting up of the court where necessary.  

Institute of psychiatry: The health department told the cabinet that the emrging new problems relating to health, the mental and behavioral disorder was one of the major health problems. In vision of 2025, incased number of mental disorder cases has given important focus in the strategy.

Considering an alarming situation to overcome such increasing non-communicable disorder, the health department presented a draft bill namely `Sir Cowasjee Jahangir Institute of Psychiatry and Behavioral Science Act, 2019 by converting 150-year old Mental hospital, at Deh Gidoo Hyderaba. 

The cabinet approved the draft bill and referred to Sindh Assembly for presentation in the house. 

Variation in FBR, SBR tables: The Board of Revenue presented two proposals regarding variation in the valuation Table of Urban properties in Sindh which are as follows:

In the first instance valuation of Karachi, Hyderabad and Sukkur may be brought at par with FBR valuation table dated July 23, 2019.

Comprehensive survey of all cities may be conducted to rationally determine the number of categories with clear demarcation of the area falling in each category in the cities (Metropolitan/Municipal corporations and committee). In the first phase survey may be conducted within municipal area through deputy commissioners. The cabinet considered the proposal and constituted a three member committee comprising minister Revenue Makhdoom Mahboob, Minister Local Government Nasir Shah and Minister Energy Imtiaz Shaikh to review the proposal and submit their report in the next cabinet meeting. 

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