Post-flood Balochistan facing shortage of food items

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Balochistan is facing an alarming shortage of food items, especially grain, in the aftermath of the heavy monsoon rains and deadly floods that destroyed tens of thousands of acres of crops.

The Flour Mills Association of Pakistan said in a recent statement that Balochistan is facing an alarming shortage of grains. The association said the government is nonchalantly handling the situation which could easily spiral out of control.

According to careful estimates, the recent rains and flash floods destroyed at least two hundred thousand acres of crops throughout Balochistan, leaving millions vulnerable to starvation. The raging floods also destroyed the road and rail network of Balochistan, isolating it at a time when it needs help the most. At least 25 flour mills in Balochistan have shut down, and the remaining few are also threatening to close their gates in the wake of the grain shortage.

The flour mills have run out of their stock of stored grain, and the supply of flour to the rest of Balochistan has been halted, creating an alarming shortage. Flour has also seen a worrying spike in price – in some areas, a 100-kilogram bag of flour is being sold for 13,000. As thousands of families face starvation, the wheat stored in government and private granaries is reportedly going bad.

The annual target of grain supply in Balochistan’s open market is a million bags, but only three hundred thousand bags were available in the market this year. The wheat stocked in government and private granaries have also gone bad due to the heavy rains and floods. Most of it was washed away in the floods.

Balochistan is also suffering from a shortage of other essential supplies, like tomatoes, onions, potatoes and various other vegetables. There are also reports that hoarders are selling these essential supplies at exorbitant rates in the open market. According to estimates, 33 out of the 34 districts of Balochistan were affected by the floods. Almost all these districts are suffering from some form of food shortage, which makes it extremely difficult to tackle compared to if it was localized.

SourceTBP

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