Federal Govt determines to control locust: Fed Food Secretary

KARACHI, Dec 30 (APP):Federal Food Secretary Muhammad Hashim Popalzai on Monday assured the Sindh Government that sufficient funds have been allocated by the Federal Government to control the locust and all available resources would be utilized in this regard.

He was co-chairing a high level meeting on locust control along with Sindh Chief Secretary Syed Mumtaz Ali Shah at the Sindh Secretariat here, said a statement. Federal Food Secretary Hashim Popalzai presented National Action Plan Desert Locust Surveillance and Control 2020 terming the situation as emergency surfaced after generations of locust present in Sindh and Baluchistan.

He informed the meeting that the Food Ministry would send its recommendation to the Federal Cabinet for imposing national emergency against locust. Speaking on the occasion, Syed Mumtaz Ali Shah called upon all stakeholders to work together to control locust attack on crops in the province.

The Sindh Chief Secretary directed the deputy commissioners and DG Agriculture to keep monitoring the operation against locust in desert areas and develop close coordination among district administration, agriculture department and federal plant protection department so that work could be done in a minimum time frame.

The CS Sindh also directed deputy commissioners to survey the loss caused by the locust to the standing crops at various districts in Sindh.

He also stated “The provincial government is ready to provide all manpower, funds, vehicles, pesticides and all available support for the eradication of the locust while pesticides have also been purchased”.
He also called for increasing the airplanes for aerial spray and said minimum 10 airplanes must be used to control the situation under National Action Plan Desert Locust Surveillance and Control 2020.

The meeting attended by the by MNA Nawab Yousuf Talpur,Secretary Agriculture Sindh, Agha Zaheeruddin, Secretary Food Sindh Liaq Ahmed, DG Sparco, DG Plant protection, DG PDMA Baluchistan, DG PDMA Sindh, Deputy Commissioner of relevant districts of Sindh, and others concerned officers of Sindh,Punjab and Baluchistan.

The meeting was briefed about the National Action Plan Desert Locust Surveillance and Control 2020 which would be launched from January 01 to June, 2020 from Baluchistan. As many as 30 camps would be established comprising technical staff of Plant Protection Department and employees of provincial Agriculture and PDMA for the control program. The DG plant protection stated that 100000 liters of ULV pesticides would be sprayed via airplane in Baluchistan to control locust.

The Director General department of Plant Protection further shared the details of the action plan informed the meeting that from July 2020 to December 2020 total 30 camps would be established in Sindh and ULV pesticides would be sprayed via airplane in Sindh. Around 20 camps would also be established in Punjab to control the locust.

It was pointed out by the deputy commissioners and MNA Nawab Yousuf Talpur that the Federal Plant Protection department was informed to start control operation in Nara Desert. The meeting was informed that plant protection department has controlled the locust in 233775 hectors.

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