KARACHI - Land ownership in few hands is directly responsible for devoid of secure access to food . The state of malnutrition is intrinsically linked with land ownership.
These were the conclusions drawn at a Dialogue “Food Security Interventions: A Dialogue on the Missing Links” organised by the Pakistan Institute of Labour Education and Research on Friday.
The dialogue sought to review current crisis of food insecurity in Pakistan and the missing links in the interventions from the state and the donor and development sector.
Fifteen percent of children are severely malnourished in Pakistan and 40 percent suffer from stunted growth. The province of Sindh is further down the malnutrition link.
Karamat Ali of PILER pointed out that the most important sectors of health and education have largely been given away to the private sector. The state has, very swiftly, abdicated its responsibility of providing basic necessities to people. He said that citizen’s capacity to resist the state has not only declined, it is now taking another form where people are forced to turn to violence to make themselves heard. “And this state pays attention only when the citizens pick up arms.”
Professor Praveen Jha, of the Jawaharlal Nehru University said that in terms of food security, India continued to have an alarmingly high level of Global Hunger Index right uptill 1990s, which stood at 32. It has now come down to 21 which is still very high. However, the overwhelming majority of hunger affected population is the working poor. He highlighted landlessness as one of the fundamental issues behind food security.