Appreciating the concern shown by Lieutenant Governor Manoj Sinha towards the plight of Covid- affected families and Covid-lockdown hit people under the tourism sector, Peoples Democratic Front (PDF) Chairman Hakeem Yaseen Thursday urged the need for a comprehensive relief package for the affected farming community.
In a statement issued here, he said the Covid lockdown coupled with massive hailstorms in various areas of J&K had severely-affected all the prospects of agriculture and fruit activities, leaving livelihood of lakhs of farmers in lurch.
Hailing the relief measures initiated by the LG for Covid-19 affected people including the poor strata of tourism sector, Yaseen urged the need for a comprehensive relief package for the poor farming community.
He said that due to the lockdown almost all the farmers and fruit growers were unable to market thier produce.
"The farmers are facing tremendous difficulties in marketing thier cherry produce due to continuous lockdown," Yaseen said adding that the livelihood of the farming community as a whole had been pushed to the wall due to the prevailing restrictions on movement in the wake of Covid pandemic.
He said it was imperative to provide immediate relief to the farmers, fruit growers and traders to save thier families from starvation.
Yaseen demanded that free ration announced by the government for only BPL families should be provided to all the households of J&K till the pandemic was over.
"Likewise, bank loans of all farmers and fruit growers under KCC scheme should be waived off immediately besides providing them fertilizers, seeds and other agricultural inputs free of cost, " he said.
Yaseen said that the government should exempt electric and water fees of the people till the situation arising out of Covid pandemic comes to normal.
He said due to Covid pandemic people were not able to pay thier monthly electric bills, loan instalments and other taxes .
Yaseen also urged the need for keeping a cap on the prices of essential commodities adding that skyrocketing prices of consumer goods had broken the back of consumers.
He said that the government machinery had failed miserably in its duty to curb the profiteering and black marketing in the open market.