Science ministry says sorry to sugar inquiry commission
Maintains it cannot help determine sugar ratio in sugarcane within a week
The sugar inquiry commission had thought that the Ministry of Science and Technology would help in the ongoing probe and, therefore, sought technical assistance but the reply contained suggestions of contacting others.
According to 24NewsHD TV channel, the ministry also said that the required report could not be compiled in a week.
As the inquiry commission expanded the scope of the investigation, its head, FIA DG Wajid Zia, wrote a letter to the ministry’s secretary, in which he asked various questions.
The basic question asked by the FIA DG was: what is the average sugar yield from sugarcane in Pakistan.
He wrote that there was no independent mechanism in the country to determine the ratio. The amount of sugar obtained from sugarcane in other countries of the region was more than that in Pakistan, he added.
In this connection, the commission asked the ministry to conduct lab testing of sugarcane in Sindh, southern Punjab and Khyber Pakhtunkhwa.
According to sources, the inquiry panel will compile a report on the operational matters of sugar mills beside the reasons behind the rise in sugar price.
However, the ministry said it wasn’t possible a report in a week, saying the lab testing was possible only during the crushing season. Sampling could be done on three different occasions from December to February.
It also suggested to consult the agriculture department on different kinds of sugarcane and contact the relevant regulatory authority looking for lab testing in the sugar mills.
The commission asked for help on the issue as the amount of sugar in sugarcane is very important in the sugar price and the profit of mills owners.
The sources say the inquiry commission described the reply as unsatisfactory, as its members said the response was the reality of an institution making claims about conducting research on the coronavirus to the moon.