KARACHI               -             Sindh Minister for Industry, Commerce and Cooperative Department Jam Ikramullah Dharejo has said that industrial units in Sindh are suffering heavy losses due to the federal government’s flawed policies.

“We are asking the federal government for our rights; we are not begging. The Sindh government is with industrialists. If industrialists plan sit-ins against the policies of the federal government, we are with them,” he said while addressing a joint press conference with representatives and office bearers of industrialists at the Karachi Press Club on Thursday.

Muhammad Javed, chief coordinator of Karachi Industrial Forum; Zubair Motiwala, president of the Council of Pakistan Textile Association; Salman Chawla; Islamuddin; Ali Shahid; Nasim Akhtar; Ahmed Chennai and others were also present on the occasion.

Dharejo said that Karachi industrialists had been inviting attention of the federal government to the dying industries due to loadshedding of electricity and gas. He said that industrialists want the government to have an idea of the situation of the country’s economy and federal ministers on the other hand are making tall claims about the economy and it was really a shocking situation. He said the prime minister comes to Karachi but he does not have time to listen to problems of Sindh industrialists. He said that federal ministers from Karachi have also kept their eyes closed on such issues. He said that gas stoppages had left millions of homes without fire for cooking.

“Thousands of people have become unemployed and are suffering from severe mental stress,” he said. He said that Sindh is providing 70 percent of gas produced domestically and Sindh exports 55 percent but its legitimate rights are denied. He said that due to the unjust policies of the government, heavy taxes of Rs175 billion have been levied on gas. He said these unbearable taxes are destined to destroy the industry. The minister said that people of Sindh are demanding their constitutional and legal rights. He was of the opinion that industries were in danger of closure if the federation not resolve the gas supply problems. The federal government should wake up. The federal government and its ministers have to be serious on national issues. He assured the industrialists that the Sindh government stands by them.