Government urged to compensate farmers for crops losses

  • August 07, 2010
Islamabad Chamber of Commerce & Industry (ICCI) has called upon the government to properly compensate the farmers who have lost all their crops due to current heavy rains & flash floods in the country.

Mr.Zahid Maqbool, President, ICCI said that the torrential monsoon rains and subsequent floods have played havoc with huge swathes of agricultural land in different parts of the country destroying all standing crops like cotton, sugarcane, rice, maize, pulses and oil seeds etc.

These crops were the sole source of livelihood for the farming community and if left unattended, not only farmers will face extreme problems in life, country will also face shortage of these food items. It is, therefore, the responsibility of the government to take notice of the situation and try to compensate affected farmers to mitigate their sufferings.

He said the ongoing floods have reportedly inflicted a colossal loss of more than $1 billion to agriculture in the Punjab and Khyber-Pakhtunkwa. How could it be possible for farmers to stand on their own feet without some sort of financial support from the government, he asked.

Traders said that the floods have also caused huge losses to the livestock and the poultry farmers as large number of animals and poultry have expired in different areas of the country. It was stressed that these farmers should also be compensated by the government so that they could be able to re-establish themselves to normal life.

Mr.Zahid Maqbool said after losing their source of income, it would not be possible for farmers to pay back loans. Therefore, government should consider waiving off loans of affected farmers. He said asking them to pay back loans at a time when they have landed in serious crisis, would be tantamount to making their life more stressful.

He said that the supply of fruits and vegetables from up country has been suspended after the rains and floods across the country. This has caused unprecedented surge in the prices of these products unleashing a new wave of food inflation in the country.

Therefore, the government should also waive off duties and taxes on imports of fruits and vegetables so that prices of these items could come down and the common man could be spared of the difficulties caused by price hike of these items.