KARACHI: Flour millers have alleged that the Sindh food department was buying thousands of tonnes of substandard wheat from Punjab.
“We want to meet Rangers director general to disclose this mega-corruption,” Pakistan Flour Mills Association’s (PFMA) Sindh Chairman Saman Mal Dewani told Dawn on Tuesday.
“Our members have checked the samples of wheat being unloaded at Pipri-Landhi Godown. It’s unfit for human consumption,” Mr Dewani said.
He said the arrival of trucks from Punjab and unloading of substandard wheat at the godowns has been going on for the last four to five days. Around 10,000 to 12,000 tonnes have already arrived, he added.
The PFMA Sindh chief expressed surprise at the procurement drive of the food department “despite good-quality new crop in Sindh”.
He feared that the department would force millers to lift poor-quality wheat for preparing flour during Ramazan, especially for the people of Karachi.
“This low-quality wheat, which is also being used for animal feed, is priced between Rs900 and Rs1,000 per 40 kilograms,” he said.
The Sindh government aims to procure 1.1 million tonnes of wheat from growers at the rate of Rs1,300 per 40kg.
The commodity is selling for Rs3,150 per 100kg in the open market of Karachi and for Rs3,100 in Hyderabad. Flour rates have so far been stable due to sustained demand.
The rate of flour No.2.5 is Rs34.50 a kg while the price of fine atta is Rs36 a kg. The retail price of Bake Parlour and Ashrafi’s 10kg bags is around Rs400-410, while the ex-factory rates hover between Rs370 and Rs375.