Women farmers role in economic development of Pakistan highlighted

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LAHORE, Oct 20 (APP):Farmers, especially female, are playing an important contribution towards economic development of Pakistan and they should be given due encouragement.
The speakers said this addressing an event titled `Women convention – celebrations on World Food Day 2017′, held a local hotel here on Friday.
Oxfam-Pakistan and Indus Consortium jointly organised the event,
where over 80 small women farmers, from five districts of Punjab attended it.
Minister Environment Protection Mrs Zakia Shah Nawaz Khan presided the event. Moderated by Fiza Qureshi, Program Manager, Indus Consortium, the concluding session was chaired by Dr Ayesha Khan, Country Director, Hashoo Foundation whereas Saadia Sohail, Member Provincial Assembly, Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf, Faiza Ahmed, MPA from Pakistan People’s Party (PPP) and Saira Iftikhar, MPA from the ruling party Pakistan Muslim League-N were
the panelists.
A large number of people from civil society organisations, government officials, environmentalists, academia, corporate entities and development organizations.
Upon being presented the charter of demands, Minister Zakia Shah Nawaz said, “Farmers, especially female, play an important role in contributing towards Pakistan’s economy.” She said that they are the backbone of our country. She said that as per directives of the Punjab Chief Minister
Shehbaz Sharif, we are investing heavily in educating our rural youth as they are unaware of their rights, once educated they will be able to understand what their rights are.
Presenting their charter of demands, the female farmers from rural district of Punjab said that natural disasters affecting their crops thus the government needs to take action and safeguard their crops. They further demanded that government should provide good quality seeds for improved crops, loans should be provided to small female farmers on easily installments. The female farmers also demanded sufficient allocation for agriculture in the provincial budget.
Oxfam’s Programme Director Ms Javeria Afzal encouraged the participants to support rural women farmers. “Women have very important role in food production as 72.7% of women are engaged in agriculture sector of the country,” she said.