Sindh cabinet sets wheat procurement target for FY21 at 1.4m tonnes

Published February 12, 2021
The Sindh cabinet fixed on Thursday the wheat procurement target for crop 2020-21 at 1.4 million tonnes (mmt) at a rate of Rs2,000 per 40kg. — Reuters/File
The Sindh cabinet fixed on Thursday the wheat procurement target for crop 2020-21 at 1.4 million tonnes (mmt) at a rate of Rs2,000 per 40kg. — Reuters/File

KARACHI: The Sindh cabinet fixed on Thursday the wheat procurement target for crop 2020-21 at 1.4 million tonnes (mmt) at a rate of Rs2,000 per 40kg.

The cabinet, keeping in view the shortage of teaching staff, approved a proposal for the recruitment of around 37,000 teachers in the next three years.

The meeting, held under the chairmanship of Sindh Chief Minister Syed Murad Ali Shah here at CM House, was attended by provincial ministers, advisers, chief secretary and all secretaries.

Wheat availability

The food department told the cabinet that currently 800,000 tonnes of wheat was available with the department. The department had procured 1.236mmt from 2019-20 and procured 117,000 tonnes of imported wheat from the federal government.

The department assured the cabinet that the wheat stock available with it was sufficient till the harvest of the new crop, 2020-21, therefore, it requested the cabinet to decide the procurement target.

37,000 teachers to be hired over three years

The cabinet decided that the support price would be Rs2,000 per 40kg as was decided earlier and 1.4mmt wheat would be procured in the next procurement season starting next month.

The cabinet also allowed the food department to purchase bardana to the extent of the assigned target at the ratio of 80 per cent PP bags and 20pc jute bags.

Reaction to centre’s allegation

The Sindh cabinet rejected the allegation of the federal government that the provincial government had hoarded wheat which resulted in the price hike. The cabinet termed it a baseless statement and recalled the statement of Federal Minister Fakhar Imam which he had given on the floor of the National Assembly and had admitted to the disappearance 6.6MMT of wheat from Punjab.

It was observed in the meeting that the federal cabinet instead of admitting smuggling of wheat from Punjab was levelling baseless allegations against the Sindh government.

Recruitment policy

The provincial cabinet has constituted a sub-committee to review recruitment policy 2021 for teaching and non-teaching staff in the education department.

The committee submitted its recommendations as follows: “The minimum prescribed qualification for PST shall be graduation in the second division. The post of PST (BS-09) may be upgraded to BS-14 henceforth for initial recruitment in view of upgradation of qualification from intermediate to graduation. The PST shall remain in primary schools throughout their service.

“The recruitment rules for other teaching cadres such as Music Teacher, SLT, Oriental Teacher etc may be revised keeping in view the availability of the specialised qualification holders in the market.”

The cabinet discussed the recommendations and approved them in principle with the direction to the education department to prepare a detailed presentation on how the recommendations would be implemented and what would be the financial impact.

The cabinet was told that around 37,000 positions of teachers of different cadres were vacant in the school education department.

The cabinet allowed the education department to start recruitment [through IBA Sukkur] in three phases during the next three years.

Remission granted

The cabinet, considering the request of Junaid Rehman Ansari, a lifer at the Central Prison, Karachi, granted him remission.

The cabinet directed the home department to work out the details of such other prisoners who could be given similar remission. The cabinet also called details of the prisoners who have completed their sentence but are still languishing in jails because of non-payment of surety bonds.

The chief minister directed the home department to submit these details in the next cabinet meeting.

Published in Dawn, February 12th, 2021

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