Wheat flour shortages: Nanbais go on indefinite strike


While people perturbing over increase in prices of flour in the country, nanbais (bread makers) in Peshawar, Hazara division and rest parts of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa on Monday went on strike for indefinite period after failure in negotiations with the provincial government.
All tandoors have been closed in the city, bringing misery for dwellers. Citizens are facing a lot of difficulties due to unavailability of Roti in the market. They say the government has already increased prices of every item and now increase in Roti price will further burden them.
Some of the citizens say Nanbais are totally justified in observing strike as they cannot afford to sell Roti on old prices. The ultimate result of the strike will increase in Roti price, which means more burdens on consumers.
Citizens say amid increasing taxes and price-hike it has become difficult for a common man to keep his body and soul together.
“It may be true that the former rulers looted the country and the country is in difficult situation, but what is the crime of citizens who always bear the brunt of difficult circumstances,” said a citizen while talking to this scribe here.
In KP, a bag of super fine wheat flour weighing 85kg is being sold for Rs5,200 and a 20kg bag is being sold for Rs1,100.
Muhammad Iqbal, of the Nanbai Association while talking to this scribe demanding the price of roti (weighing 170g) to be fixed at Rs15 while claiming that wood and tariffs have also been increased.
Another citizen said there is no increase in his income, but expenses have increased enormously due to sky-rocketing price hike.
“I work day in and day out to ensure a minimum quality life for my family, but the existing inflation has brought down my quality of living despite no fault of mine,” another citizen said, adding that increasing burden of prices may force the people to come on roads.
KP government is adamant to not increase price of roti and nanbais strike illogical. Provincial Minister for Information, Shuakat Ali Yousafzai on social media stated that KP CM Mahmood Khan has issued clear instruction for provision of flour to tandoors on government controlled rates to not increase price of roti to give relief to poor masses.
The Minister said the offer is still available for nanbais so why they are demanding increase in price of roti. He said the KP government offered to bread makers to get flour on government controlled rates when Punjab government imposed ban on of flour.
He said flour is available sufficient quantity in market while ban on transportation of flour from Punjab was also lifted due to provincial government serious steps. He said Nanbais had decided to go on strike before the ban, so it is completely illogical.
The of wheat flour from Punjab to Khyber Pakhtunkhwa has restored and a crisis in making has been avoided, an official of flour dealers body said. “A convoy of 25 , carrying consignment of wheat flour, has reached Peshawar,” the dealers association said. The price of a 20 KG bag has dropped to Rs1,100 from earlier price of Rs1200, dealers said.
Meanwhile, the government of Punjab has decided to supply 5,000 metric tons of wheat to Khyber Pakhtunkhwa (KP) government on daily basis to overcome ongoing flour crisis.
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