STATE TIMES NEWS
JAMMU: Apni Party Provincial President and former Minister Manjit Singh on Sunday sought intervention of the Govt to fix rates of world famous basmati rice of RS Pura which has declined from last several months.“The declining rates of the basmati rice have threatened the survival of the farmers and traders in the business of supplying rice at the local, national and international level,” said Manjit Singh.The Former Minister was speaking at a public meeting organised at Kullian in RS Pura by the party leaders in which farmers highlighted their sufferings.The meeting was organised by Sansar Chand, Sikander Bhagat and JP Singh in which Apni Party leaders including Shanker Singh Chib, Ajaz Kazmi, Raqeeq Ahmed Khan, Raj Kumar Lalotra, Vaibhav Mattoo, Joginder Singh, Jangmeet Singh Bali and Dilbir Singh were present.The Apni Party Provincial President said that the Govt must intervene to stabilize rates of basmati rice which has worried the farmers more than the traders in the business. “The farmers have no other source of earning their livelihood and if the basmati rice’s rates continue to decline, it will threaten the very survival of the farmers,” said Manjit Singh on the basis of complaints made by the farmers during the meeting with them in the border village of RS Pura.He said that the department concerned should take lead and promote the basmati rice and also prepare a report after finding out the cause of decline in rates of basmati rice. “The labourer charges are higher in basmati growing fields whereas the farmers get less price of the produce when they sell it in the markets,” added Manjit Singh.With regard to the deplorable condition of bunkers in villages along the International Border, Manjit said that the people have complained that the bunkers have become “death traps” for the people. “Many bunkers are incomplete. In majority, people have expressed their concern about bunkers flooded with groundwater. Insufficient numbers of bunkers in villages have added to more trouble in the lives of the villagers on the International Border,” he said. During ceasefire violations, he said, the farmers have no safe place to take shelter except these bunkers which are constructed with insufficient numbers. “People find it hard to hide in these bunkers which are flooded with groundwater and many times, they have to pump the water out of the bunkers. There is no toilet facility inside the bunkers. People especially women and children in large numbers take shelter in these bunkers,” he said. He said that facilities provided by the administration should be improved instead of pushing people to great inconvenience.The former Minister said that transporters, drivers, conductors and traders are among the worst sufferers due to covid-19 lockdown and post August 5, 2019 constitutional changes in Jammu and Kashmir.Sarpanch Swaran Lal, Jagdish Lal, Panch Balvinder Lal, Kharati Lal, Parvjeet, Somnath, Swaran Lal, Shammi Choudhary, Shubham, Gurvinder Singh were among the locals who attended the function and they also joined Apni Party in presence of senior leaders of the Party.
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