Peshawar: NWFP govt orders curb on cross-border wheat smuggling
PESHAWAR: NWFP Chief Secretary Sahibzada Riaz Noor has directed the districts and tribal administrations to take measures to control cross-border smuggling of wheat, saying every year approximately 1.3 million tonnes of wheat is smuggled to Afghanistan, resulting in wheat crises in the NWFP.
Presiding over a high level meeting at the Civil Secretariat Peshawar on Saturday, Riaz Noor directed district police officers (DPO), district co-ordination officers (DCO) and political agents of the tribal agencies to take timely measures to prevent wheat smuggling across the border and punish government officials not carrying out their duties.
The meeting was attended by all DCOs, DPOs, district nazims, the Food secretary and all political agents of the seven tribal agencies. The chief secretary said that the total demand of wheat in the NWFP was 3.4 million tonnes, of which only one million tonnes was being produced in the province, while the remaining 2.4 million tonnes was being provided by Punjab and the Pakistan Agricultural Storage and Services Corporation (PASSCO).
Flour supply He asked the DCOs to make necessary transfers in food departments of their respective districts and refrain from being pressurised in this regard. Furthermore, they have been directed to ask the flourmills to supply flour only to dealers with a valid license.
DCOs have to determine the flour price themselves and provide it to fair price shops so as to ensure its availability to the common man on cheap prices, he directed.
Sahibzada Riaz Noor gave the powers of food magistrates to DCOs and directed them to visit the markets regularly and check the prices as well as the quality of atta and other edible items.
It was decided in the meeting that flourmills would not be allowed to prepare a bag of atta weighing more than 20kg. The flourmills violating the decision would be sealed.