ISLAMABAD    -   The federal govern­ment has immediate­ly set up a National Response and Coordi­nation Centre to cope with the devastation and early rehabilitation of the floods affectees.

The decision was made at a high-level meeting held with Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif in the chair at the PM Of­fice here on Monday.

The meeting offered Fateha for those who perished in the floods.

The participants ob­served that the current devastation caused due to the floods never oc­curred in the last 60 years in Pakistan.

The meeting decided to immediately release five billion rupees to NDMA to deal with the rescue and relief operations, including provision of shelter and food to the affectees across Pakistan without any discretion. The meeting was attended by Minister for Climate Change Sher­ry Rehman, Minister for Planning Ahsan Iqbal, Finance Minister Miftah Ismail, Minister for IT Aminul Haq, Minister for Food Se­curity Tariq Bashir Cheema, Minister for Railways Saad Rafique, Minister for Water Syed Khurshid Shah, Advisers to the PM Amir Muqam and Qamar uz Zaman Qaira, SAPM Ahad Cheema, CM Sindh Murad Ali Shah, CM Balochistan Abdul Qadoos Bazenjo, Army Chief General Qamar Javed Bajwa, Naval Chief Admiral Am­jad Khan Niazi, Air Chief Zaheer Ahmed Sidhu, DG MO Pakistan Army, DG ISPR Maj Gen Babar Iftikhar and chief secretaries of all four provinces. However, Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf boycotted the meeting. The meeting approved the grant of Rs15 billion for Sindh and Rs 10 billion for Balochistan, however, there was no mention of grant for Punjab, KPK and GB in the official communiqué.

The Chairman of National Disaster Management Authority (NDMA) briefed the meeting in detail about the situation of floods in the country and rescue and relief activities. During the meeting, the situation arising out of the devastating floods in the country was re­viewed in detail. The meeting noted that the damage caused by the floods due to rains across the country particularly in the provinces of Sindh, Balochistan, Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, South Punjab and Gil­git Baltistan was unprecedented in the last 60 years. The partici­pants appreciated the untiring efforts made under the leadership of Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif for the rescue of flood affectees, for undertaking emergency steps for relief, regular visits of the flood af­fected areas and for uninterrupted assistance to the victims.