KARACHI    -     Sindh Chief Secretary Syed Mumtaz Ali Shah has called upon all stakeholders to work together to control locust attack on crops in the province.

He said this while chairing meeting on locust control in various districts of Sindh along with Sindh Minister for Agriculture Ismail Rahoo on Tuesday at Sindh Secretariat. The meeting was attended by the senior member of the Board of Revenue, secretary of agriculture, DG of plant protection and DG of Sindh Agriculture Extension. Divisional commissioners attended the meeting through videolink. Syed Mumtaz Ali Shah said that as per reports appearance of the locusts in district of Jamshoro, Matyari, SBA, Sanghar, Nushehroferoz and Khiarpur. He stated that it’s a very serious issue which must be addressed through joint efforts of all stakeholders. The director general of the plant protection department informed the meeting that specific teams and resources including the pesticides and spray through airplanes are the parts of the operation, close coordinated efforts by the stakeholders including Food Agriculture Organization (UN), divisional & district administration, Sindh agriculture department Board of Revenue is continued to eradicate the menace. He also informed the meeting that locusts travelled to Sindh from Iran via Baluchistan and an operation in this regard is being carried out in Baluchistan too.  The chief secretary maintained that more teams comprising the representatives of the department of plant protection, divisional and district administration and officers of Sindh agriculture department be constituted while a central control room has also been established at the office of Chief Secretary and all filed teams were directed to submit their report regarding presence and travelling of the locusts on daily basis. The chief secretary stated that the Sindh government will write to SUPARCO for survey and travelling of the locusts on technological basis.

The chief secretary stated that stock position of pesticides should be acquired from companies so that procurement be processed continuously. He stated that the provincial and federal governments would bear all expenses of the spray and survey. He also asserted that 2 to 3 airplanes may also be added for areal operation. “I have also discussed the matter with the Federal Authorities to this effect” added the Chief Secretary.

Provincial Agriculture Minister Muhammad Ismail Rahoo stated that the Sindh Government has started operation on war footing and timely action in this regard would save cotton and other crops. He further stated that a training session of officers of agriculture department would start from next week under FAO in Sukkur.