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Milk price fixed at Rs 94 per litre in Karachi

KARACHI: Supply of fresh milk will resume in Karachi at uniformed rates following directives of the Sindh High Court to commissioner of the city to settle the issue.

According to the notification, milk price has been set at Rs94 per litre.

According to the two-judge bench comprising Justice Aqeel Ahmed Abbasi and Justice Ashraf Jahan, the new rates will be effective from April 1. Till then milk would be sold at Rs 85 per liter in Karachi as per court orders.

These directives were passed by the judges after a civil rights campaigner Muhammed Imran Shahzad, called for the reduction of prices of dairy products and also to set a proper local task force to regulate prices in the city.

Commissioner Ejaz Ahmed Khan informed the bench that the stakeholders, including dairy farmers and retailers, had agreed that fresh milk would be sold at Rs94 per liter. He maintained that a notification to fix the new price was ready and it could be officially issued with the permission of the court.

However, a group of the retailers objected to the price proposed by the commissioner, arguing that it was in disproportion to high production costs.

When asked about the price increase the Commissioner said that he could rightfully issue a notice of such kind under both federal and provincial laws.This was seconded by the Advocate General Shabbir Shah.

The decision was both contested and accepted by the present farmers and retailers.

The bench members remarked that they should realize the citizens were suffering due to the sale of the commodity at a higher rate.

“We should not ignore the poor citizens,” Justice Abbasi told the officers and stakeholders.

“Fresh milk is a basic need, not a luxury, but the stakeholders are debating whether to increase the price further”…..”Instead of selling the commodity at Rs60 or Rs70 per liter to the citizens, the stakeholders were debating an increased rate of Rs94 per liter.”

The law officer argued that fresh milk was being sold at Rs74 per liter by the retailers when the petition was filed. He questioned the stakeholder if there was any other commodity whose price was increased by Rs11 every year.

Commissioner Khan said that the Karachi Metropolitan Corporation only had 11 inspectors how can they effectively regulate and enforce an official rate in a city of 20 million citizens.

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