KARACHI: “Sindh has long been plagued by a high frequency of hunger, malnutrition, poverty and repeatedly hit by natural disasters,” read a statement issued by the Hari Welfare Association (HWA) on the eve of ‘International Day of Peasant Struggles’ -- observed on April 17.

It said that in 2022, the food security situation in the province significantly deteriorated as a result of rising costs of food and fuel amid drought, torrential monsoon rains, animal diseases and drastically shrinking job prospects.

HWA president Akram Ali Khaskheli said in the statement: “International Day of Peasant Struggles is a day to recognise peasants’ rights and raise awareness of the challenges faced by small-scale farmers, agricultural workers and rural communities around the world. Like other peasants in the world, peasants in Sindh are facing serious issues, including food insecurity, due to many problems but primarily the absence of land reforms and hegemony of a few feudal lord families on lands and the entire governance structure.”

“Due to its absence, there are just a few people who own land. Agriculture is less productive, and too many rural and peasant groups receive minimal economic benefits. When properly carried out, land reforms can help with the problem of food insecurity in many ways,” he added. He said that under the land reforms, farmlands should be distributed to landless peasants; required farming and animal rearing incentives should be extended to such marginalised groups.

Concentration of lands in the hands of a small number of wealthy people or families leads to restricted access for peasants and landless farm workers which has a negative impact on food security, agriculture productivity, opportunities for income and livelihood, and social justice and equity, according to him.

The HWA chief described the Sindh Tenancy Act of 1955 as a significant piece of legislation and regretted that it had never been implemented in its true spirit.

Published in Dawn, April 18th, 2023

Opinion

Editorial

ICJ rebuke
Updated 26 May, 2024

ICJ rebuke

The reason for Israel’s criminal behaviour is that it is protected by its powerful Western friends.
Hot spells
26 May, 2024

Hot spells

WITH Pakistan already dealing with a heatwave that has affected 26 districts since May 21, word from the climate...
Defiant stance
26 May, 2024

Defiant stance

AT a time when the country is in talks with the IMF for a medium-term loan crucial to bolstering the fragile ...
More pledges
Updated 25 May, 2024

More pledges

There needs to be continuity in economic policies, while development must be focused on bringing prosperity to the masses.
Pemra overreach
25 May, 2024

Pemra overreach

IT seems, at best, a misguided measure and, at worst, an attempt to abuse regulatory power to silence the media. A...
Enduring threat
25 May, 2024

Enduring threat

THE death this week of journalist Nasrullah Gadani, who succumbed to injuries after being attacked by gunmen, is yet...