LAHORE                -                Punjab Government has banned wheat supply to smaller provinces till the completion of its wheat procurement drive.

The government is also considering a proposal to seal Punjab’s borders to enforce the new restrictions on transportation of wheat to other provinces. 

A high level meeting chaired by Punjab Food Minister Abdul Aleem Khan on Friday decided that smaller provinces would be allowed to purchase wheat from Punjab after a written agreement. Only the surplus wheat would be supplied to other provinces, it was further decided.

The Food Minister also consulted the Chief Secretary and proposed that Punjab’s borders with other provinces should be sealed forthwith to prevent transportation of wheat from Punjab. After fulfilling its target, Punjab would supply wheat to other provinces, the minister told the Chief Secretary.

Senior Minister maintained that there would be regular written purchase agreements with other provinces and no private buyer would be allowed to buy wheat from Punjab. He informed the meeting that Punjab Chief Minister Sardar Usman Buzdar had directed to form an integrated policy for procurement of wheat so that there should be no shortage of wheat or flour in the province.  Food Minister also directed senior officers of Food Department to reach South Punjab within 24 hours and check complaints regarding wheat purchase in different districts especially in Bahawalpur and Dera Ghazi Khan. He also asked them to take necessary steps on the spot to resolve the complaints.

Abdul Aleem Khan observed that district administration had a key role in the procurement of wheat and he himself would visit districts of South Punjab in next week to check out the issues related to the purchase and delivery of wheat there.