ISLAMABAD: The Pakistan Economy Watch (PEW) has demanded stern action against sugar mills mafia which is blackmailing the government, hurting consumers and crushing farmers. Sugar mills have stopped the supply of the commodity in Karachi and some other places to force the government to increase the export subsidy to make extra money, it said.
The prices of sugar have artificially been hiked benefiting the mafia controlling the supply of the product in the country on the cost of masses, said PEW President Dr Murtaza Mughal.
He said that why politicians and other influential are allowed to set up sugar mills if the national production is already in surplus and costly enough to be exported. The same mafia has stopped payment to sugarcane farmers in different areas of the country making life difficult for them, he added.
Continued exploitation of sugarcane growers has disappointed them that can result in serious issues in the country, therefore, authorities should take corrective measures. He said that growers are disappointed by the attitude of the owners of the sugar mills and lack of action by the federal and provincial governments are switching to other crops.
Dr Murtaza Mughal said that growers are not getting notified price while delayed payments, exploitation by middlemen, and weight assessment problems has left cultivators in a lurch. Payments are delayed to farmers to push them to sell their products to the agents of millers on throwaway prices.