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LAHORE: The Punjab government on Saturday issued directions to all the deputy commissioners to ensure availability of sugar at the price of Rs 89.75 per kg across the province.

The directions were given at a meeting jointly chaired by Provincial Minister for Industries and Commerce Mian Aslam Iqbal and Chief Secretary Punjab Kamran Ali Afzal, at the Civil Secretariat.

The provincial minister expressed displeasure over the sale of essential commodities at exorbitant prices in some cities and directed to rectify the situation as soon as possible. He stated that there is a question mark on the performance of the administration as it is failing to implement 'its own notified prices'. "The Performance would be visible only when prices stabilize," he remarked.

The minister said that the sale of sugar, flour and other commodities at the exorbitant prices would not be tolerated and action would be taken against those responsible for negligence and carelessness. He also asked the officers to comply with the instructions about sealing shops over profiteering.

The Chief Secretary directed the deputy commissioners to carry out physical verification of the stock in the sugar mills. He also asked the administration and police to keep a close watch on the transportation of sugar to prevent its hoarding. He said that the main reason for instability in the prices of agricultural commodities was the poor market system. He ordered strict action against the officials of market committees involved in corruption and irregularities.

The Chief Secretary asserted that improvements in the supply chain system as well as administrative measures are needed for stability in prices. He also issued instructions to display the rate lists prominently at all the shops and take action in case of violation. The administrative secretaries of relevant departments including industries, agriculture, and food, Chairman PITB, Commissioner Lahore and officers concerned attended the meeting while all the divisional commissioners and deputy commissioners participated through video link.

Copyright Business Recorder, 2021

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