Though elected and democratic governments deliver and serve the masses all over the world yet Pakistani democratic governments appear as extensions of dictatorship. It is irony of the fate that democratic government remains busy in supporting their political activists instead of working for the welfare of poor masses.
Earlier “Sasti Roti” scheme launched by Punjab government was the worst example of nepotism, adding that 70 percent of the flour bags being provided to registered tandoors were being sold in the market. The poorly-run scheme has cost the government Rs 20 billion and the common man had not received any of the benefit of this scheme.
Similarly Dasterkhawa scheme, income support programmes established a force of advisors and task forces in the province in the name of several welfare schemes which are actually worst examples of nepotism. Sadly nothing has been achieved rather these were the ways of waste of public finances through dubious decisions of government.
Instead of taking any lesson from these flop measures, Punjab government has taken another step of establishing government owned independent meat company entitled Lahore Meat Company which would operational within weeks. Dr Hamid Jalil, Chief Executive Officer of Lahore Meat Company, said that live stock could play a vital role in country’s economy. “It is among the fastest growing sector of the country. It is one of the leading sectors that has currently 17.4 growth rate in GDP and also has the 53% share in the agricultural economy. Live stock has three major roles in the economy like firstly it ensures food security, produces protein meat and eggs, live stock is part of the rural economy because more than 37 percent rural population is associated with this business where it plays a role of emergency bank and it is also essential need of every house hold in rural areas, last but not least it can come under the category of value-added industry while having tremendous scope in terms of enhancing the foreign reserves. Sometimes it acts like a cushion and gives the instant relief to the rural families,” he elucidated.
Jalil told SPlus in fact Pakistani meat could be exported to many countries like Iran, Central Asian States, Saudi Arabia, UAE, Kuwait, Syankyank Province of China, Malaysia and Afghanistan where every Muslim wanted to have halal meat. Millions of the Pakistani buffaloes were being smuggled to the neighbouring countries where these had been using as the source of beef meat rather than milk animal. So government took this step to utilize country’s resources for the exchequer.
“With high population growth rate in the region, demand for hygienic meat is on the rise. This along with rising concerns amongst consumers related to halal practices in meat industry led to the establishment of Lahore Meat Company. The primary objective of the organization is to deliver quality meat that is 100% halal and is obtained following international standards of food safety and hygiene. Lahore Meat Company has vision to achieve tremendous grounds in the export market and emerged as one of the largest exporter of meat from Pakistan. In order to keep up with international standards company has installed state of the art slaughtering facility. The plant has been imported from Australia and is the largest private slaughtering facility in the country with capacity of 40 head per hour. Lahore Meat Company has qualified professionals to maintain its day to day affairs and also to explore new markets both local and international for the company’s products,” he explained.
While adding about the potential market of Pakistani meat he said it would integrate meat supply chain and would look after the production and processing of meat then it would be able to export. Prior it would take export orders from the regional and other countries as LMC had two huge assignments from Iran and Malaysia. Moreover LMC has also signed a contract with Iran’s Mashad Meat Company.
Besides the tall claims of government officials and members of task force welfare schemes could not give much benefit to the poor masses like Sasti rooti scheme proved a burden on exchequer. As opposition criticised PML N government for taking loans to run so called welfare schemes, “Punjab Chief Minister Shahbaz Sharif, an outspoken critic of loans, was forced to borrow $150 million from the Asian Development Bank. The State Bank of Pakistan also transformed an overdraft of Rs 73 billion into loans due to the province’s weak economy. As a result, the Punjab government is paying Rs 4 billion in interest every month”.
Now we can hope for better performance of Lahore Meat Company as CEO of LMC claims instead of dreadful continuation of nepotism in province again through such projects.
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