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Agriculture sector on decline in KP
Sunday, May-14-2017

Sarhad Chamber of Agriculture (SCA) has said that due to lack of sustainable agriculture policy, agriculture sector is on decline in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa and growers are facing multiple problems.

Talking to journalists, interim president, Sarhad Chamber of Agriculture, Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, Haji Nazir Khan and senior members Haji Abdul Nabi and Muhammad Iqbal Khan expressed serious reservations over non-availability of quality seeds of different crops and urged provincial government to ensure the provision of certified seeds at reasonable prices to the farmers' community of the province.

They pointed out the tobacco growers as main victims of the irresponsible attitude of government which had miserably failed in protecting the rights of the growers.

They identified a number of problems being faced by the farmers such as unavailability of fertilisers, quality seeds, irrigation water and stressed that government should take keen interests in resolving the issues to make the province self-sufficient in the production of crops and strengthening food security.

Similarly, the chamber's interim President Haji Muhammad Nazir Khan said that none of the successive governments had concentrated on resolution of the problems of farmers' community and they had to purchase uncertified seeds on high price from the market. "If quality seeds are supplied to farmers the production will automatically increase otherwise crops will be affected by different diseases," he complained.

He said growers had to spend a lot of money on tobacco but the profit is not in proportion to their cost of production as a cartel of multinational companies had established their monopoly over the market and deny paying due price to growers.

Muhammad Iqbal Khan, a sugarcane grower talked about the injustices met out to the farmers at the hands of sugar mill owners and contractors. He complained cheat in weighing process, fixation of price with the growers and then delay in payment are the main problems faced by them. He called for the provision of soft loans to farmers on the pattern of those of industries and ensure easy farm to market transportation.

He urged the provincial government for convening a joint meeting of all growers' organisations to collect information and take steps to bring to an end their exploitation at the hands of owners of sugar-mills and tobacco companies.

Regarding the re-organisation of the Sarhad Chamber of Agriculture, they said that efforts were being made in this regard. They said that recently growers' meetings had been held in Swabi, Mardan and Malakand, which had unanimously made Nazir Khan as interim president/convenor of the chamber.

Courtesy Business Recorder

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