LAHORE: Punjab Chief Minister Muhammad Shehbaz Sharif on Sunday ordered for ensuring purchase of sugarcane for Rs180 per 40kg from farmers.
Addressing at the meeting held on Sunday to review payment to farmers by sugar-mill owners, he also ordered for ensuring digital monitoring of the entire process of payments and taking strict action against mill-owners, who do not pay the full amount to growers.
The chief minister said that action would be taken against the mill-owners if farmers are not paid the full price of their produce.
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He said that interests of the working class were very dear to him and he would protect them at all costs. The chief minister said that provincial ministers and secretaries should visit their assigned districts regularly instead of sitting in their offices, to help farmers get their rights.
President Kisan Ithead Group Khalid Khokhar said on that farmers were grateful to the chief minister for protecting their interests. President Sugar Mill Association Javed Kanyi said that they would ensure implementation of decisions regarding payments to sugarcane growers.
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Provincial Minister Bilal Yasin, Sheikh Allahuuddin, spokesman for the Punjab government Malik Ahmed Khan, Chief Secretary, Inspector General Police and Farmer representatives attended the meeting. Provincial Minister for Agriculture Naeem Akhtar Bhabha and President Sugar Mills Association Punjab Zone Ahsan Latif participated in the meeting through Video-link.
The Punjab government had fixed sugarcane price at Rs180 per 40 kilogrammes for the current season, but mill owners were forcing the farmers to sell their yields at Rs160 per 40 kilogrammes, it was reported earlier.
Published in The Express Tribune, December 25th, 2017.
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