Babar Awan announces Rs15m for PbBC
LAHORE: Federal Law Minister Babar Awan on Monday announced a Rs10.25 million grant for the Punjab Bar Council (PbBC), saying he was giving bar associations and councils their constitutional right.
He made this announcement at the inaugural ceremony of the PbBC’s newly-constructed hostel for lawyers. He also announced Rs1 million for the hostel and Rs1.5 million for the employees of the provincial bar council.
Speaking on the occasion, the law minister dispelled an impression that the federal government was giving grants to bar councils/associations to buy their loyalties and support. Lawyers had never bowed to personal gains and nobody could buy them, he said.
Awan urged lawyers to maintain unity among their ranks and they must not bother criticism from those who never did any thing for the welfare of the legal community.
He said his doctors and President Asif Ali Zardari had advised him to avoid trevelling, but, he said: “I cannot avoid lawyers, who are my family.”
“I will go everywhere for lawyers even if I need to use a plane, a car or a horse,” he said firmly. He said he could not stay away from his own community as he was committed to their (lawyersÂ’) welfare and progress. He said residential colonies for lawyers would be included in mega projects of the government. He said medical facility would also be started for lawyers, who were the most deprived community like journalists in our society.
He was of the view that by giving grants to bars, he was fulfilling his responsibilities, however, some people were criticising his efforts.
“I am not giving grant to any individual but to elected representatives of bar councils and associations,” he added.
Awan also announced Rs500,000 for PbBC Secretary Akbar Bhati and Rs50,000 each for Khwaja Jahangir for reciting the Holy Quran and Malik Shahid for reciting a Naat at the ceremony.
PbBC Vice-Chairman Mumtaz Mustafa and bar’s executive committee chairman Rana Muhammad Akram also spoke on the occasion.
They thanked the minister and announced their support whenever he (the law minister) called them. They said the federal government was constitutionally bound to give financial grants to bar councils and associations.
They also demanded the Punjab government to allocate grants for lawyers’ bodies in the provincial budget.
Federal Law Secretary Pir Masood Chishti and Senator Kazim Khan were also present on the occasion.