PESHAWAR: Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Assembly on Monday directed the sugar millers of the province to purchase the commodity at a rate of Rs180 per 40 kilograms.
The ruling was given by Speaker Asad Qaiser while disposing of the call attention notice of Mahmood Jan, a PTI legislator from a suburban locality of Peshawar.
Taking the floor on a call attention notice, the PTI legislator said that during the current session, he had presented a call attention notice demanding a payment of Rs180 per 40 kilograms to sugarcane growers as the sugar millers were paying Rs165 for the same weight of sugarcane crop.
He said that the house has constituted a committee headed by the provincial minister for food and the committee has taken a unanimous decision on the payment of Rs180 to the growers for 40 kilograms of sugarcane. However, the sugar millers are not executing the decision.
The legislator said that those growers who had supplied sugarcane to mills were paid Rs165 per 40 kilograms, which is an injustice. Therefore, he urged the provincial government to initiate an action against sugar mills to make them bound to pay Rs180 per 40 kilograms of the crop.
Responding to the call attention notice, the Provincial Minister for Food Qalandar Khan Lodhi said that the price of Rs180 per 40 kilograms sugarcane is fixed countrywide while the provincial governments of Punjab and Sindh are also paying subsidies to their sugar millers. However, Khyber Pakhtunkhwa is not paying any subsidies to the sugar millers.
The provincial minister said that so far none of the growers had lodged a formal complaint with the government in this regard and the business is going on with mutual understanding between the sugar millers and the growers of the province.
To the contentions of the provincial minister, the MPA said that along with the member of the house, he is also a big sugarcane producing farmer. He said that growers prefer to put their crop on fire rather than selling it to sugar millers.
He said that due to the delay in the start of crushing, the growers had also lost the season of wheat sowing.
To dispose of the matter, Speaker Asad Qaiser directed that till the presentation of the report of the Standing Committee of the house, the growers should be paid Rs180 per 40 kilograms.