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Bilawal for implementation of NAP to control locust attack

National

May 9, 2020

ISLAMABAD: PPP Chairman Bilawal Bhutto Zardari Friday asked the federal government to immediately implement the National Action Plan (NAP) formulated to control the ensuing locust attack in the country.

“Any delay in the implementation of NAP decided at a meeting between the Federal and Sindh government would mount great danger to the agriculture as well as the economy,” said the PPP chairman in a statement.

It may be mentioned here that the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) has already warned that locust attack can inflict losses to the tune of Rs600 billion on the Pakistani economy if the federal government failed to take timely and full-fledged action as per the NAP.

Bilawal pointed out that a meeting between the federal and Sindh governments had decided the NAP under which at least 12 planes had to be hired for aerial spray in the Balochistan areas being the entry point of locust swarms. “But the Federal government didn’t hire these planes and only one aircraft and three helicopters are being used for operations in Balochistan, which cannot control the swarms,” he added.

He pointed out that swathes of locust swarms had entered Kashmore, Larkana, Umerkot and Tharparker. They have moved into India whose desert is fertile breeding ground for them before heading back to Sindh, Punjab and even to the parts of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa.

The PPP chairman said it was the key responsibility of Plant Protection Department of the federal government to conduct aerial spray, while the Sindh government had provided pesticides and vehicles.

Bilawal said the Federal Ministry for Food Security was again missing in actions as locusts attack crops across Pakistan.

"Last year despite our pleas provinces were left at the mercy of locusts. If the federal government failed to act this is another disaster in the making," he added.