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Monday, July 26, 2021

Country leading towards worst wheat crisis, warns Pakistan Kisan Ittehad

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Islamabad: The Pakistan Kisan Ittehad (PKI) on Friday warned that country is being pushed towards worst kind of wheat crisis. Lethargy will leave masses high and dry and eat up precious forex stocks. Jan Nisar Khalil, President, PKI, representing 200 associations of farmers across the stretch of country, said that fertiliser mafia and their patrons have snatched billions of rupees from poor growers and deposited the money in foreign banks. Like India, farmers in Pakistan have started committing suicides.

This he said while leading a delegation who met Dr. Murtaza Mughal, President, Pakistan Economy Watch at his office. He said three percent people are holding over sixty per cent of land and resources in a sector that employs nearly forty per cent of whole workforce. Khalil said that government will fail to achieve wheat target due to lack of water and fertiliser. “It will be an extra burden on the pockets of public and government.”

He lamented that the mafia was allowed to carry almost whole stock of DAP and Urea to sell it in black market. Similarly, he said, the hidden hand has again delayed import of the fertiliser to the advantage of profiteers.

Khalil told Dr. Mughal that the prices of DAP has been receded by 320 per cent in international market while the price of urea has seen a slide of 150 dollars per tonne but the impact was not transferred to end users. The millers would increase prices if there is a slight upward trend in international market but would give lame excuses if it’s otherwise.

During the meeting, Dr. Mughal said it is unfortunate that private sector has been allowed to play havoc with agriculture, the backbone of economy without any proper balancing mechanism. We lack opportunities for those who want to invest in industry, trade or agriculture but there are ample chances for hoarders, profiteers and middlemen.

The successive policies have turned agriculture into the weakest segment of economy and the private sector as well as officials involved in hurting economy for their petty gains does not deserve any relaxation, he said.-Pak Economy Watch

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