Cheeni Kam hai– Sugar Less Pakistan

Makro sugar pack.jpg

Now days Pakistan is almost sugar less because of ongoing sugar crisis. The hoarders, mill owners and government officials have made our lives unsweetened. In an agricultural country where sugar cane is a major crop it is strange how the crisis shaped up. Its dearth in the market has made sugar such a commodity which even neighbors don’t want to bestow each other.

In spite of the Supreme courts price fixture of Rs 40 per Kg it has been sold at a rate of around Rs 60 to 80 per Kg. Utility stores are also failed to provide enough amount and low rate sugar for the customers. Hoarding has been done by big stores like Makro. When I was shopping few days back at Makro star gate there was no sugar at display. Upon inquiring they said sugar is available at Rs 62 per kg. I purchased it and they had provided me a separate bill of it. While I was exiting the sales person took the sugar bill from me and said that we are not allowed to let the customers go out with this bill. I protest that I had paid for it and bill has to be provided but he apologizes which made me think that they are black marketing it. The sugar bag has been printed by Makro Habib limited by the brand name “ora” which is not available any where else in the market. Such huge super markets can help the government by reducing prices but customer care is secondary thing.

Whether called self marketing or publicity stunt by some it is commendable that ARY Network took the initiative to raise voice against sugar price hike and hoarding. A week ago they had launched “Cheeni boycott” campaign with a tag line ‘ek koshish (an effort)’ to urge people not to use sugar so that the prices drop. The culinary channel of this network is not showing any sweet dish recipe and broadcasting public service messages by celebrities to support this campaign. The impact of this campaign is a question but effort like this should be appreciated as it is at least making some noise.

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18 thoughts on “Cheeni Kam hai– Sugar Less Pakistan”

  1. “Sugar less Pakistan” is not a very optimistic thing to say in the electronic media. The sugar is there. This could have been worse, it is only that the Competition Commission of Pakistan advised to let the market forces establish the price of sugar. The real issue is the fight against terrorism.

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  2. @ James: “It will be there for someone who needs it and has the credit to borrow it, so the wheels of commerce and industry keep turning. What’s wrong with that?” Years ago, a priest told a bank robber (in prison) that he shouldn’t have robbed the poor. The robber said (a) poor people don’t keep money in bank lockers (b) bank robbers helped to provide employment to security personnel and insurance companies by their illegal activities. Probably our sugar barons and politicians see themselves as promoters of economic activity. However, when they loot the country, money that should have gone to promote health and education goes out of the country and into swiss bank accounts or in buying expensive toys like SUVs.

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  3. @Shakir: Okay, just to be fair, the sugar barons are writing the paychecks, albeit small ones, to many people locally who wouldn’t otherwise have the work. And the foreign banks in which the profit money is deposited will loan it to–to God knows who. It will be there for someone who needs it and has the credit to borrow it, so the wheels of commerce and industry keep turning. What’s wrong with that?

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  4. @ James: it’s not at all likely that our sugar barons will spend their ill-gotten wealth in Pakistan. Their profits will go into foreign bank accounts, and they will declare losses in running their factories for two or three years before getting the prime minister or the president (himself a sugar baron) to write off those losses. Every couple of years this is done faithfully, and they continue their lavish life styles without anyone dare asking them why (when they’re not able to pay off their debts to banks).

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  5. So it appears that Pakistan is suffering the effects of “globalization” due to a disconnect between the population and management; management has discovered that there is more money (for management) in exporting sugar (for now) than in selling it nationally/locally. “Patriotism” usually means almost zero to management; profits are everything.

    I created a thing many years ago, which sold very well. It was for years made in NY, and 30 people worked full time making copies of it; it cost about $20 each to make. Then “management” (not me) discovered they could have the things made in Mexico for $2 each, saving $18 each, which they pocketed. They fired the 30 New Yorkers. This is “globalization.” And the now even richer managers are wondering why the neighborhood is starting to look so seedy.

    It’s a problem. Locally. Things look just a little, little bit better in Mexico. *Por favor, yo habla no Espanol; yo soy estupido gringo!* 🙂

    Maybe the Indians (Chinese?) will be sweeter neighbors for awhile, and maybe your sugar-masters in Pakistan will spend at least part of their hefty profits in Pakistan, or for Pakistan. I hope that’s some comfort to you.

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  6. Media is too busy in covering issues such as political fights that they are literally crushing the common man. Sugar crisis would have been resolved till now if media had warned and played a responsible role in the process. A survey done by Gilani Research Foundation shows that almost 57 % people in the nation think that media is not playing a good role. You guys should check out this survey its really informative. Here the link:
    http://www.gallup.com.pk/pollsshow.php?id=2009-11-13

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  7. same goes for kurdish terrorists (PKK/PJAK) which have terrorized our brothers and sisters in the Republic of Turkey.

    i love the screams of dying terrorists…..their blood, their human remains — they cause the soil to rot.

    But one less terrorist clears the clouds, and makes way for peace.

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