ISLAMABAD - Besides giving approval to Strategic Trade Policy Framework 2012-15, the federal cabinet gave formal go-ahead to Pak-Iran Gas Pipeline Project and handing over of Gwadar Port management from Port of Singapore to a Chinese company.Giving briefing on the decisions taken by the cabinet, Federal Information Minister Qamar Zaman Kaira said a number of MoUs with various governments were also approved. The minister, highlighting the performance of his government, said it was a singular achievement of the government that it had brought down the inflation and had doubled the revenue generation since assumption of power.Earlier, in his opening remarks at the cabinet meeting, Prime Minister Raja Pervaiz Ashraf made it loud and clear that the demand to dissolve the Election Commission of Pakistan was unconstitutional, adding neither the chief election commissioner nor any member of the ECP could be removed in an unconstitutional manner. “I want to convey a message to the anti-democracy elements that we shall not succumb to their intrigues. We shall not let anyone derail democracy. We gave and are ready to give any kind of sacrifice for the country and democracy,” he added. Ashraf said no one would be allowed to derail the country’s democratic setup, adding Pakistan was going to have elections in a few weeks.Kaira said the cabinet had accorded approval to handing over of Gwadar Port management from Port of Singapore to China Overseas Holding to make the port operational for the collective betterment of the people of Balochistan.To a question, he said it was the decision of Port of Singapore which was earlier tasked to make the port functional and the federal cabinet had just accorded approval to the deal.“Both the companies have settled their deal,” Kaira said, without giving a timetable for the transfer.Kaira said that Singapore’s PSA International could not develop or operate Gwadar ‘as desired’ and said he hoped that under new management the port would soon contribute to country’s flagging economy.“The Chinese will make more investment to make the project operational,” Kaira said.Kaira said the cabinet had also given formal approval to the Pak-Iran Gas Pipeline Project and also allocated funds for the project while a four-member committee, headed by the federal finance minister, had been constituted to monitor progress on the project.Kaira revealed the cabinet had also approved legislation to further strengthen the office of ombudsman. Explaining the point, he said the term of the federal ombudsman would be fixed at four years, besides granting financial and administrative autonomy to him. The ombudsman would be empowered to initiate contempt proceedings for any violation, he revealed. Earlier, such powers only vested in the office of the federal tax ombudsman.He further said that under the proposed legislation, it was made obligatory for all the government departments to comply with the orders of the ombudsman within 15 days while it would also be made mandatory that all the cases filed in the office of the ombudsman should be settled within 45 days.To another question, Kaira admitted that the country was facing a power shortage due to which the people were facing difficulties, but quickly added the PPP-led government had initiated a number of projects to add inexpensive electricity to the system and mentioned Bhasha Dam, Neelum-Jhelum and a few other projects which would help ease the crisis on completion.To another question, he said the government was not averse to dialogue and the five-member committee would hold talks with all the stakeholders, including the leader of opposition in the National Assembly on holding of elections of the national and provincial assemblies the same day. The committee would complete the task assigned to it in next eight to 10 days, he pointed out.The federal information minister was all praise for the political forces and said the incumbent National Assembly would be remembered in the history for the remarkable job it had done, especially, the legislative business it had conducted during the past five years had no parallel.During the cabinet meeting, Law Minister Farooq H Naek and Interior Minister Rehman Malik exchanged hot words when the former objected to the statement of the latter about imminent terrorist attacks in Karachi and said that it had panicked the people of the port city and adversely affected the overall economic activities in the country. Malik, responding to him, said it was his duty to keep the people abreast with threats. He also gave a detailed briefing to the cabinet members on the overall law and order situation with particular reference to the volatile situation in Karachi.