Sindh govt announces to allot farmers 52,000 acres of state land

CORPORATE AGRICULTURE FARMING

City News Dec, 4 2023
Sindh govt announces to allot farmers 52,000 acres of state land
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KARACHI: The caretaker Sindh government has approved the allocation of over 52,000 acres of state land for corporate agriculture farming, reveal official documents.

Last week, the interim Sindh government gave the final go-ahead to allot 52,713 acres of state land for the project. Of which, 28,000 land will be handed over in Khairpur, 10,000 in Mithi, 9,305 in Dadu, 3,408 in Sujawal, 1,000 acres in Thatta and 1,000 in Badin. The land is being granted under the umbrella of the Special Investment Facilitation Council (SIFC), a top civil-military body that was set up in June to attract foreign investments in the country.

Earlier this year, the chief secretary of Sindh had directed the provincial Land Utilization Department and the Board of Revenue to report back on the availability of “sufficient state land” in the province, which “can be leased out and utilised for corporate agriculture farming”, state documents seen by Geo.tv.

The documents even recommend that the land be leased out to the Pakistan army, insisting that the latter had a “well-trained manpower” for the job. To ease and regulate the grant of land, the Sindh government has also notified a Statement of Conditions under the British-era law, the Colonization of Government Lands Act 1912.

As per the Statement of Conditions, the government-owned land will be leased out through an open auction for 20 years to a person or an entity. The lessee will then use it for agriculture research, farming, import substitution, livestock research, etc.

The Sindh government will be entitled to 33% of the profits earned from this project. While the Statement of Conditions restricts federal and provincial government departments from taking part in the open auction, it allows private companies to bid for the land. The agenda of a Sindh’s cabinet meeting, held on December 1, even suggests that the interim Sindh government plans to lease out the state land to a private company run by the Pakistan military.

Published in The Daily National Courier, December, 05 2023

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Staff Reporter
Staff Reporter https://www.dailynationalcourier.com/author/staff-reporter
Daily National Courier is a leading morning English newspaper of twelve pages covering all international and national political developments on 24/7 basis.

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