ISLAMABAD: The health card service for 1.2 million families in Azad Jammu and Kashmir was unveiled by Prime Minister Imran Khan on Friday (AJK).
“We want people on the other side of Kashmir to know how we treat our people by launching this facility,” the Prime Minister said while addressing a ceremony held to launch the Sehat Sahulat Universal Health Care Program for Azad Kashmir.
“I want to send a message to the people of the illegally occupied Indian Jammu and Kashmir, who face severe hardships at the hands of the fascist Indian regime, by introducing health insurance in AJK, about how Pakistan treats its people in Azad Kashmir,” he said.
In line with Riasat-i-vision Madina’s and in compliance with the Objective Resolution adopted by the Constituent Assembly of Pakistan in 1949, PM Khan said the current government was working to make the nation a real Islamic welfare state.
Instead of pretending to make the nation an Asian tiger or to turn Lahore into Paris, according to the Objective Resolution, we are seeking to make Pakistan an Islamic welfare state,” he added.
Mr Khan said that AJK would benefit from health care for 1.2 million people and would have the right to access free care from 350 government and private hospitals across Pakistan.
He said that this insurance scheme was first introduced in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa by the former government of Pakistan Tehreek-i-Insaf, adding that the health insurance facility was being given to six million citizens in Punjab, and the provincial government was striving to expand it to the whole province by the end of 2021.
The prime minister said the vision of a welfare state, which was introduced by Prophet Muhammad (PBUH), was aimed at looking after the poor and providing basic facilities to all.
He often pointed to the Scandinavian countries’ welfare model, like Denmark, Sweden and Norway, whose governments were bound to provide their residents with all of the basic amenities.
“It is my faith that Allah Almighty increases your resources when you take care of people, particularly the poor,” he said. He continued that this is why welfare states became wealthier.
Prime Minister Khan clarified how for 10 years, he had struggled to create the Shaukat Khanum Cancer Hospital, where patients have been given free care for the past 25 years.
He said that when battling for the cancer centre, he had dreamed about launching a framework close to the new health care programme.
“When I entered politics, I thought I would introduce a health system where people would be able to receive free medical treatment if I had an opportunity to serve the nation,” he said.
PM visits the financial staff
On Friday, Prime Minister Khan ordered that urgent measures be taken to move on to the common man the benefits of the improving economy.
Mr Khan, presiding over a high-level meeting of his economic team, said that the business-friendly policies of the government were now bearing fruit.
“Our economy is coming back on track because of government efforts and the world is recognising the economic achievements of Pakistan in the midst of the Covid-19 crisis,” he said.
Mr Khan expressed his satisfaction with the rise in remittances from abroad and their preservation at a rate of $2 billion per month and said some of the government’s accomplishments were the development of the large-scale industry, the record output of the building industry and the growing exports of the textile sector.
He said banks’ loans to young people and the building industry on easy terms will further boost the economy.
The Prime Minister also emphasised the need to encourage the improvement of economic indicators by small and medium businesses, which are now on a positive trend.