The Prime Minister Imran Khan was presiding over a meeting on adulteration, hoarding and inflation, in which provincial chief secretaries were briefed on the situation of food prices in the respective provinces.
Prime Minister Imran Khan approved the establishment of a National Demand Supply Cell (NDSC) to control the prices and monitor the availability of essential commodities and instructed the provinces to formulate a National Action plan within a week.
The meeting was attended by Federal Minister for Planning Asad Umar, Federal Minister for Food Security Khusro Bakhtiar, PM’s Adviser on Commerce Razak Dawood and Special Assistant to the PM on Information Dr Firdous Ashiq Awan. Punjab Chief Minister Usman Buzdar, Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Chief Minister Mahmood Khan and chief secretaries of the four provinces took part in the proceedings through video links.
PM Khan was also briefed on some mobile phone Apps for checking the prices of the commodities and their online delivery in big cities of the country. In issuing instructions for the rapid establishment of the NDSC, which would monitor the supply and demand for essential items such as sugar, wheat, and rice, Khan said the manpower required to do so the effect should be provided by the Ministry of Food Safety.
The meeting was informed that the Pakistan Agricultural Storage and Services Corporation had already issued 400,000 tonnes of wheat to the province. However, the Sindh government had called for supply of another 100,000 tonnes of the commodity.
According to an official announcement issued after the meeting, the issue of the additional request was referred to the cabinet’s Economic Coordinating Committee for approval. The Prime Minister, however, instructed Shah to take strict measures against profiteers and hoarders of essential foods, especially wheat flour in his province, particularly in Karachi.
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