LAHORE - Jamaat-i-Islami chief Sirajul Haq has said the PTI government should have arranged quality seed and subsidised fertiliser for growers instead of talking about eggs and poultry.

Addressing a Kissan Convention at Mansoora on Sunday, he said that farmers could bring about a revolution in agriculture if the government provides them interest-free loans, farm machinery, pesticides and irrigation water.  The JI chief said that as in the past, the incumbent prime minster was surrounded by the sugar mafia due to which the common farmer appeared helpless. He demanded formation of a task force at the federal and provincial level with farmers’ representatives onboard for solution of growers’ problems. He also called for waving GST on agricultural inputs, and provision of low priced farm inputs under a package. He called for clearing the arrears of the growers with the sugar mills owners.  Siraj demanded rate of sugarcane be fixed at Rs250 per 40/kg and the CPR should be given the status of a cheque to stop the exploitation of the growers at the hand of the mills owners.

He said if the Chief Justice, instead of talking of population  planning, had launched a movement for bringing under the plough nearly 60 per cent of the country’s land lying barren, it would have created a hope and a spirit among  the masses.

He said five percent elite were exploiting the 95 per cent of the general public. He said the people sitting in the assemblies represented the elite and they did not think themselves answerable to anybody. The JI chief, on occasion, approved the conversion of the Kissan Board Pakistan into JI Kissan.

Meanwhile, JI Secretary General said that the US government notification listing Pakistan among the countries which created hurdles in the minorities worship was the biggest lie of the US President Donald Trump, about this country.

Addressing a gift distribution ceremony in connection with Christmas at his residence, he said that all the minorities in this country enjoyed religious freedom and it was the constitutional duty of the state to protect the minorities and their worship places.  He said the US notification was an attempt to defame this country but all such conspiracies could not succeed.

Father Nadeem Francis, Pastor Joseph Younas, the custodian of the shrine of Khawaja Ghulam Farid, Khawaja Moeenud Din Mahbub Koreja, Pir Naubahar Shah and Shahid Gulzar Bhatti were also present.

Liaqat Baloch said the JI wanted to unite all the religions in the country and the Islamic sects because Pakistan belonged to them all.