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August 24, 2015

Punjab sugar mills owe cane growers Rs4.5 bn

National

August 24, 2015

LAHORE: Powerful sugar millers in Punjab still owe more than Rs 4.5 billion to sugarcane growers while the next cane crop is due in a couple of months.
The framers across Punjab staged a three-day protest outside the Provincial Assembly on The Mall but returned empty-handed while Chief Minister Shahbaz Sharif assured them of resolving their grievances.
Of 45 sugar mills in the province, only 19 paid dues to the framers timely while 24 are still to pay the growers. One sugar mill has already been sealed and another did not crush sugarcane in the last season.
According to official figures available with The News, the Brother Sugar Mills of Kasur owes more than 50 per cent dues to the farmers. The Brother Sugar Mills has so far paid Rs 850 million to the sugarcane growers and still owe them over Rs 878 million.
The sugar mills which did not pay the growers are Shakarganj-Bhone-Jhang (around Rs 250 million), Colony-II Khanewal (Rs 298 million), Shakarganj-I-Jhang (Rs 395 million), Hussein Sugar Mill Faisalabad (Rs 395 million), Noon Sugar Mills Sargodha (Rs 325 million), Abdullah Sugar Mills-I Okara (Rs 395 million), Abdullah Sugar Mills-II Sargodha (Rs 215 million), Macca Sugar Mills Kasur (Rs 25 million), Huda Sugar Mills Nankana Sahib (Rs 82 million), Kamalia Sugar Mill (Rs 355 million), Haseeb Waqas Sugar Mill (Rs 198 million), Pattoki Sugar Mills Kasur (Rs 200 million), Ramzan Sugar Mill Chiniot (Rs 189 million), Adam Sugar Mill Bahawalnagar (Rs 97 million), Haq Bahu Sugar Mill and Baba Farid Sugar Mill (Rs 60 million each), Fecto Sugar Mill (Rs 110 million), Chaudhry Sugar Mill (Rs 88 million), Ittefaq Sugar Mill (Rs 30 million), Tandlianwala Sugar Mill (Rs 35 million), Kashmir Sugar Mill (Rs 30 million), Tandlianwala Sugar Mill-II (Rs 50 million) and Etihad Sugar Mill (about Rs 2 million).
The mills which have made timely payments to sugarcane growers are Popular Sugar Mill, Safian Sugar Mill, Al-Moiz Sugar Mill, Hamza Sugar Mill, Hunza

Sugar Mill-I, Hunza Sugar Mill-II, JDW Sugar Mill-I&II, Rasool Nawaz Sugar Mill, Shahtaj Sugar Mill, Layyah Sugar Mill, Sheikhoo Sugar Mill, Madina Sugar Mill, Rahim Yar Khan Sugar Mill, Fatima Sugar Mill, Ashraf Sugar Mill, Indus Sugar Mill, Channar Sugar Mill and Jauharabad Sugar Mill.
The chief minister has assured the framers that their interests would be protected at every cost and strict action would be taken against the mills not making timely payments to them.
Punjab Food Secretary Dr Pervaiz Ahmed Khan, talking to The News, said he had already issued instructions to the Punjab cane commissioner to ensure payments to the sugarcane growers in few days. “The cane commissioner has been asked to recover the dues and take action against defaulters,” he said.
Replying to a question that some of the defaulting millers are relatives of the rulers, he said the law was equal to everyone and no one would be spared.

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