21 January 2021
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The Sindh agriculture department has written a letter to the federal government asking for a ban on the import of tomatoes and extra support for the export of onions.

“This year the province is harvesting bumper onion and tomato crops, and the harvesting of crops is in full swing in the province,” said the letter written by Agriculture Minister Muhammad Ismail Rahu.

The price of tomatoes has drastically reduced because of the import of tomatoes and “bumper crop production of onions”, it said. “The farmers are not receiving the proper price of their products and have started protesting.”

Related: Does Pakistan need Indian tomatoes?

The farmers staged protests in Mirpurkhas, Jhudo, Badin, Umerkot, Kunri, Thatta, Golarchi, Hyderabad, Nawabshah, Tando Muhammad Khan, Naukot, Pangrio and Sujawal from December 15 to December 30.

According to the letter, Sindh ranks first in the production of onions and tomatoes in the country.

In 2019-2020, onions were cultivated on 57,900 hectares in Sindh, which produced 782,140 metric tonnes of the vegetable.

This year, onions are being cultivated on 58,200 hectares. “As the crop is bumper, therefore increased production and higher yield is expected compared to the last year,” the letter added.

Abdul Gh Lone