Nov 3, 2021 – Islamabad: In view of the recent price hike, Prime Minister Imran Khan announced the Ehsaas Rashan programme to provide relief to the poor in his televised speech. As many as 20 million families identified through the recently completed Ehsaas survey will benefit from the programme. Overall, 130 million people will benefit nationwide which is 53% of the population. Yesterday, the federal cabinet gave approval to launch the programme across Pakistan. Although the domestic increases are being driven by rising prices in the international market, inflationary control remains an important policy objective for the government. Ehsaas Rashan will provide a subsidy of Rs. 1,000 a month to each of the 20 million families on the purchase of flour, pulses, Ghee/Cooking oil. A 30% subsidy will be given on these three items, per unit purchase. The programme has been designed as a precision-target system of subsidy delivery focusing on deserving beneficiaries to provide financial assistance for the purchase of essential commodities at a discount through digitally processed transactions. “Ehsaas and the National Bank of Pakistan have developed a technology-led, targeted subsidy disbursal programme. This system will digitize parts of the retail sector; there will be use of real time data for decision making”, said Dr. Sania Nishtar. Under the federal-provincial cost sharing arrangement, the budget of the programme for the next six months is Rs. 120 billion in this fiscal year.