Sugar price row reaches LHC

Petition in Lahore High Court challenges sugar price hike, as bread bakers in Peshawar go on strike.


Express November 10, 2010

A petition challenging the sugar price hike was filed in the Lahore High Court on Wednesdsay.

The petition requests the court to summon Prime Minister Yousaf Raza Gillani and the chief minister of Punjab to explain the ongoing crisis as the federal and provincial governments continue to blame each other.

The petition also calls on the government to take action and form a national commission to monitor a regular supply of the commodity.

Sugar is being sold in local markets in the province at prices ranging from Rs95 to Rs120.

Locals in all districts of Punjab have protested against the escalating sugar prices and said that they would take to the streets if the trend continued.

Bread bakers strike

Meanwhile, bread bakers in Peshawar have gone on a strike following the government's decision to keep the rate of bread fixed.

The bakers association in Peshawar demanded an increase in the rate of bread following the increase in prices of electricity and commodities but the district government rejected their demands.

The association now says the strike will continue until their demands are met while consumers face severe problems due to the closure of bread bakers.

Senior provincial minister Bashir Bilour today said that the sugar crisis can only be addressed if the federal government checks profiteering. While talking to the media in Peshawar, he said that provinces cannot control sugar price hike and crises because most of the sugar mills are owned by parliamentarians.

Retail prices of sugar, which was previously available for Rs 80, have reached Rs 110 over the past two weeks in the provincial capital Peshawar.

The price of a 50 kilogramme bag of sugar, which was Rs 3,900 in the wholesale market towards the end of the October, has now risen to Rs 5,250 - an increase of Rs 1,350 per bag.

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