Jamaat-e-Islami member of Punjab Assembly Dr Wasim Akhtar demanded early resolution of farmers’ problems and provision diesel and electricity at cheaper rates.
He demanded diesel at Rs40 per liter and electricity at Rs2 per unit for the agricultural purposes. He also urged the government to purchase every grain from the farmers with 100% payment.
He demanded that resolution passed to restore the provincial status of Bahawalpur should be implemented and it should be declared an independent province.
He said that in India, farmers were provided with electricity at the price of Rs1.67 per unit while diesel is also provided at a very low price whereas in Pakistan electricity is provided at Rs10.67 per unit for the agricultural purposes. For decreasing the cost of agricultural products, subsidy should be announced on agricultural inputs like fertilisers and pesticides.
He demanded that for making Cholistan’s 6.6 million acre land suitable for cultivation, all the provinces should work together to construct Kalabagh Dam so that water can be provided for the land of Cholistan.He said that with the construction of Kalabagh Dam, not only Cholistan’s land will get fertile but also electricity’s shortfall can be eliminated. It will also help prevent floods, he said. He added that for the construction of Kalabagh Dam, Pakistan’s engineering council has presented a proposal to the government that if they are given permission to construct dam, they would not even take a single penny from the government and electricity will be produced at 18 paisa per unit. He said that they will provide the government with electricity at Rs1 per unit for 5 years and after which they will hand over the project to the government.
He said that till the resolution of Kashmir matter, Pakistan should boycott all kinds of trade with Indian. Agricultural products’ imports from India has put our farmers in great distress, he said and added that Pakistan imports Rs180 billion worth potatoes, tomatoes and other vegetables. However, he said, it exports Rs52 billion worth gypsum to India through which the latter is making its land fertile. Trade with India causes loss to Pakistan that is why it should be stopped, he demanded.