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Friday May 24, 2024

Sindhi Hari Tehreek rejects corporate farming in province

By Aftab Ahmed
March 10, 2024
Farmers threshing rice crops in their fields with the help of a thresher machine in Hyderabad. — APP/File
Farmers threshing rice crops in their fields with the help of a thresher machine in Hyderabad. — APP/File

Hyderabad: The Sindhi Hari Tehreek organised a conference against the auction of 1.3 million acres of land of the province in the name of corporate agricultural farming.

The conference was held in Shahpur Chakar in Sanghar district, in which resolutions were adopted that demanded putting an end to occupation of Sindh’s land, and construction of such dams and canals that had been making the province barren.

The participants demanded that the authorities distribute land among landless farmers, end feudalism and abolish what they said constitutional institutions like the Special Investment Facilitation Council (SIFC).

The slogan of ‘Jaga Jaga Kisan Jaga’ was raised during the conference that also stated that an amendment to the IRSA Act was unconstitutional and it should be repealed.

The participants asked Parliament to pass an Act for abolition of the SIFC. They also demanded fixing a quota for farmers from the oil and gas royalty in all districts, including Sanghar.

A large number of people, including women and children, participated in the conference. The Sindhiani Saqafati group on the occasion held a cultural protest against land grabbing and water theft in the province by presenting tableaus on national and revolutionary songs.

Speaking on the occasion, Awami Tehreek central president Lal Jarwar said the Pakistan Peoples Party had sold Sindh to get the presidential post.

A new central body of the Sindhi Hari Tehreek was also elected in the convention.

Meanwhile, the Sindh Abadgar Ittehad (SAI) has slammed corporate farming and talks with the French delegation on environmental change, and also expressed concerns over not opening wheat procurement centres.

The meeting of the SAI’s executive committee, which was hosted by Abdul Razzaq Abrejo at the Abrejo House and chaired by SAI President Nawab Zubair Ahmed Talpur, demanded putting an end to and banning the use of agricultural lands for housing and their commercialisation.

It was also considered in the meeting that in the areas where cultivation of rice has been banned, action should be taken against those who are planting there.

Expressing concern over the sale of fake mixed seeds and agricultural poisons in Sindh, the meeting requested that the federal and provincial governments take action against such dealers by banning them, formulating strong laws against them and punishing them for at least a year.

The agriculturist forum also expressed anger over the increasing prices of fertilizer, and demanded that the government give subsidy directly to the farmers instead of giving it to the mafia.

They also regretted the performance of agricultural extension and agricultural research, saying that the institutions that are a burden on the treasury and cannot give any new species to Sindh should be closed. Lamenting the Sindh Seed Corporation’s performance, they demanded its activation, and eliminating unnecessary expenses.

The meeting was informed that last year fertilizer companies earned a profit of Rs143 billion, and the sugar industry earned a profit of Rs22 billion. They demanded that fertilizers be given to farmers at controlled prices and from warehouses.