ISLAMABAD: Mir Kabir Ahmed Muhammad Shahi chaired the Senate Standing Committee on Housing and Works on Monday.

The committee was briefed by the Ministry of Housing and Works on its working, performance as well as staff strength, budgetary allocations and properties. A briefing was also given on the working and performance of the attached departments and organizations of the Ministry of Housing and Works.

The chairman committee remarked that the ministry is managing government properties throughout the country. He assured as the committee was very important, therefore, it would take positive measures for the welfare of relevant departments and the ministry.

The chairman also directed to distribute working papers among all members of the committee 48 hours before the committee's proceedings.

The committee was informed the federal government has allocated funds under four different heads. The ministry has been allocated Rs147 million budgetary amount during current fiscal year (2017-18).

Another Rs 3555 million have been spent under PWD head. The employees-related expenditure was Rs 1295 million and Rs 1754 million were spent on repairing of government accommodations and offices. An amount of Rs 143 million was allocated for the State Office. Out of total allocated amount, Rs 124 million were spent on the salaries of employees.

The committee was further informed that Rs 92 million were spent on maintenance of the Federal Lodges. An amount of Rs 88 million was spent on employees-related expenditure.

The committee was also informed that the federal government allowed the ministry to fill 188 vacant seats. Around 29 seats are yet to be filled. The committee directed the ministry officials to fill the vacant posts as soon as possible.

The committee also reviewed performance and work of Federal Government Employees Housing Foundation and various housing schemes being run under the ministry. The foundation has provided 25,000 government houses from 1984 till 2014. As many as 36,000 employees have been awarded memberships from 2009 to 2014. The foundation started own construction of houses after 2005. During 2014-16, 90,000 federal government employees were given memberships.

The policy of the government is to provide shelters to the needy on the basis of no profit and no loss.

The committee was informed that the foundation could not run its business smoothly until it is given the status of authority.

The committee was also given briefing on Bhara Kahu Housing Society, Green Enclave-2 Housing Scheme, Sector G-14 and G-15 Housing Schemes, Thallian Housing Scheme, Park Road Housing Scheme and Housing Foundations projects in Karachi.

The Secretary Housing and Works informed the committee that 21,000 government employees have been on the waiting list.