PM orders CCP chief’s removal over flour crisis

By: News Desk      Published: 11:41 PM, 5 Feb, 2020
PM orders CCP chief’s removal over flour crisis
Competition Commission of Pakistan Chairperson Vadiyya Khalil.–File photo

Prime Minister Imran Khan has held the Competition Commission of Pakistan (CCP) responsible for the recent wheat and flour crisis in the country.

Imran tells attorney general to initiate legal action against Vadiyya Khalil

He has ordered CCP Chairperson Vadiyya Khalil’s removal from office and directed the attorney general of Pakistan to initiate legal action against her. Vadiyya was removed from office in October 2018 and was reinstated on the orders of the Islamabad High Court (IHC) just a few days ago.

According to sources, the CCP failed to control the mafia responsible for the wheat and flour crisis and now people linked to the crisis would be given an exemplary punishment.

The wheat crisis came to surface with its full intensity in mid-January when the flourmills association raised the flour price by Rs6 per kilogram, raising the flour price to Rs70 per kilogram. This was an increase of Rs20 per kilogram since August 18, 2018 when the PTI-led government assumed charge of the office.

The crisis hit the country, particularly Khyber Pakhtunkhwa and Sindh, after transporters went on strike in Karachi against an increase in petrol prices, affecting flour supply to local markets in Sindh. Another factor that led to flour shortage in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa was a ban on inter-provincial movement of wheat between Punjab and KP. The provincial government said it clamped down on inter-provincial movement of the commodity in an attempt to curb unchecked smuggling of wheat to Afghanistan.

Panicked by the situation, the federal government approved import of 300,000 tonnes of expensive wheat to normalise flour supplies.