PM Imran orders indiscriminate action against sugar hoarders

PM briefed about stock availability, digital system to monitor inflation


APP January 08, 2021
Prime Minister Imran Khan. PHOTO: FILE

ISLAMABAD:

The prime minister directed strict action against all those involved in illegal profiteering and hoarding of sugar across the country.

Chairing a meeting on prices and availability of sugar, the prime minister stressed for taking the action "without any discrimination" to ensure availability of essential commodities.

Imran said profiteers and hoarders were the enemies of poor and did not deserve any concession.

The Punjab chief secretary, through video-link, gave a detailed briefing about the sugar produce, crushing and available stock in Punjab.

The prime minister was informed that to ensure ample availability of the sugar stock at controlled prices, the video-link meetings among all commissioners of divisions and deputy commissioners of districts were being held on a daily basis.

It was updated that action had been taken against those involved in under-weighing of commodities and profiteers, while 79 persons had been arrested, besides 190 First Information Reports (FIR) registered.

The meeting was attended by federal ministers Dr Abdul Hafeez Sheikh, Muhammad Hammad Azhar, Asad Umar, Adviser Abdul Razak Dawood and Dr Ishrat Hussain, Special Assistant Dr Waqar Masood and senior officials.

Separately, Prime Minister Imran Khan on Friday said the digital system launched by the government to monitor the availability and prices of essential commodities would effectively control inflation, besides ensuring transparency in policy-making.

The Prime Minister expressed the views at a briefing given by the Pakistan Bureau of Statistics on the policy-making system in view of inflation and the social and economic impact of the coronavirus pandemic.

The prime minister expressed confidence that the digital system would ensure accurate monitoring of the commodities’ prices and also evaluate the performance of district administrations.

During Covid-19 situation, he said, the government took solid measures to provide relief to the poor and working class to minimise the financial impact of the global economy hit by the pandemic.

Imran said with the blessings of Allah Almighty and the timely action of his government, Pakistan overcame this difficult situation and gained praise at international level.

The (member) Statistics informed the meeting that the digital system of monitoring had been set up with an objective to control the inflation rate.

Under the system, Pakistan Bureau of Statistics collects data on essential commodities from districts across the country and prepares reports based on comparative analysis.

The system will provide timely information on essential commodities to the National Price Monitoring Committee, federal ministries, provincial governments and district administrations and will help them take timely decisions.

The meeting was updated that the survey collected data on the situation of employment, income, remittances, food and health during the pandemic.

The survey revealed that most households were economically affected at the onset of the pandemic; however, the timely measures of the government and the smart lockdown policy lead to improvement in situation by July 2020.

The briefing was attended by Finance Minister Dr Abdul Hafeez Sheikh, Information Minister Senator Shibli Faraz, Planning Minister Asad Umar, Minister for Industries and Production Muhammad Hammad Azhar, Commerce Adviser Abdul Razak Dawood, PM's Special Assistant on Revenue Dr Waqar Masood and senior officials. APP

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