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Information Minister Senator Pervaiz Rashid says ECP has suspended some parts of the relief package for the farmers announced by the government.

Speaking in Radio Pakistan’s program, he said:”The package is not specific to any region but for the farmers of the entire nation and it is the right of all the country’s farmers. PM has decided to challenge in the Supreme Court, the Election Commission of Pakistan’s (ECP) decision to suspend the premier’s Kissan package. Government wants to help out the farmers to play their role in economic development of the country. Pakistan Agriculture Research Council has already been performing its responsibilities with full devotion. Opposition parties should play a positive role but should not criticize every step of the government that is purely for economic development of Pakistan. Rather, all political parties should support the government in efforts to make Pakistan an economic power in the world.”

Federal Minister for Inter-provincial Coordination Riaz Hussain Pirzada said: “The decision of ECP to halt some parts of the relief package announced by the government in order to facilitate the farmers is injustice with the farmers. It is unfair because farmers do not have enough amounts to buy urea, beans and others. The parties criticizing this relief package have no sympathies with farmers. Pakistan’s 80% population has been residing in rural areas. Prime Minister is well aware of the difficulties that our farmers have been facing. The relief package was an effort to facilitate the farmers so that they could also play a role in economic development of the country in the agricultural sector. My sympathies are with the farmers and I pray for the better future of the farmers of our country.”

PML-N Chaudhry Tanveer Khan said: “It is the bad luck of our country that whenever any effort is made for the welfare of the nation, all opposition parties start criticizing it. Farmers should be given their rights. ECP has made a wrong decision to halt the relief package. Agri sector is the back bone of our country. The relief package announced by the government has no concern with pre-poll rigging of LG elections. None of the political party could be affected by this package. Opponents of this package are the enemies of the nation, farmers and economic development of the country.”

Chairman, Board of Investment Miftah Ismail said: “The relief package announced by Prime Minister would facilitate the farmers. Pakistan is basically an agricultural country and such relief would definitely improve the economy of the country as well. The farmers will be motivated with the funds provided by the government. Government has initiated many development projects to overcome energy crisis as this is the main challenge that present government has been facing. Work on solar tube wells is also underway that will also provide relief to the farmers. Pakistan is among the countries that produce most sugarcane and cotton and farmers could earn maximum profits through export.”

Senator Gyan Chand said: “The relief package announced by the government for the farmers should not be related to pre-poll rigging for local body elections. We must appreciate the positive measures of the government for the welfare of the people of Pakistan. ECP should have expressed a soft corner for this package because this package is just to facilitate the farmers so that they could also improve the agri production. Political parties should avoid creating hurdles in such package and economic development of the country.”

Chief Scientist, PARC Dr. Munir Ahmed said: “Government announced relief package for farmers in which it was stated the farmers cultivating rice and cotton at up to 12.5 acres of land would be given cash support of Rs 5,000 per acre. The global cost reduction of agriculture commodities had affected the income of farmers beside increase in prices of seeds, fertilizer and pesticides, which had resultantly enhanced the cost production. But election commission had halted certain parts of the premier’s Rs341 billion Kissan package. According to secretary ECP, package was a violation of the code of conduct of the commission as it was announced at a time that could heavily influence voters. PARC has been playing a vital role in the country and we are in touch with all the provinces.”

Economist Mirza Ikhtiyar Baig said: “The government decided to provide subsidy on urea. Overall, the relief package for the farmers must be appreciated as it was a balanced package to facilitate the farmers. The package was not specific to any region but for the farmers of the entire nation. Prime Minister has made a wise decision to challenge the decision of Election Commission of Pakistan in Supreme Court. Farmers will definitely get their right. Undoubtedly, this package is only to facilitate the farmers and has no concern with the pre-poll rigging as alleged by the opposition parties. We pray that the verdict of Supreme Court favors the farmers so that farmers could be facilitated.”

Senior journalist Haji Nawaz Raza said: “I personally oppose the ECP verdict regarding suspension of certain parts of the Kissan package. Legal experts suggested that government should challenge the decision of ECP in Supreme Court because it is injustice to the farmers. If the government reduces the petroleum prices in the country then the opposition parties will say that it is pre-poll rigging. The political parties criticizing this relief package are not sympathetic with the farmers. The farmers of our country have already been suffering. Government has made the right decision to challenge the decision of ECP.” 


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