PM Shehbaz orders crackdown against smugglers

Premier says he will never allow black sheep to usurp country’s foreign remittances and people's right

Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif. — Radio Pakistan
Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif. — Radio Pakistan 

ISLAMABAD: Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif on Tuesday ordered strict action against the elements involved in the smuggling of wheat, sugar and Urea.

Presiding over a meeting to review the measures to curb the smuggling of the commodities — which is adversely impacting Pakistan’s foreign remittances and usurping the right of its people — the premier said that he would not rest until the country got rid of the menace of smuggling.

PM Shehbaz, who is also the president of the Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N), said that he would never allow the black sheep to usurp the country’s foreign remittances. “Due to Allah’s blessing and the government’s efforts, Pakistan has got a bumper wheat crop breaking the record of the last ten years.”

The people of Pakistan, he added, had all the rights over the produce achieved consequent to the farmers’ hard work and the government’s efforts, despite the heavy rains and floods.

The prime minister reiterated that he would never allow the smugglers to create problems for the people. He said the government was also carrying out plans to achieve even more wheat production by next year.

He said the government had also started implementing a comprehensive plan to ensure an uninterrupted supply of urea to the farmers for the next crop.

PM Shehbaz resolved that the government would make all-out efforts to make Pakistan reemerge as a wheat exporter country.

He also formed a steering committee under him to curb the smuggling. PM Shehbaz directed Interior Minister Rana Sanaullah to personally visit Khyber Pakhtunkhwa and Balochistan to meet the provincial authorities and submit a report.

He said the officials involved in the smuggling or showing negligence would be removed and departmental proceedings would be initiated against them.

He also instructed to confiscate the goods being smuggled and hold a proper investigation to trace out the real culprits.

He also called for increasing the number of anti-smuggling courts and building their capacity to cope with the menace, besides ensuring early hearings and strict punishment of the culprits.

The premier also asked for taking to task all the mill owners, dealers and warehouse owners involved in the smuggling. The meeting was briefed in detail about the anti-smuggling efforts on the district and provincial borders.