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Women march for Land, food and water at Lahore

Pakistan Kissan Rabita Committee demands Land for tenants

Lahore: Press Release 
25th October 2017

On the call of Asian Peoples Movement on Debts and Development, scores of peasant women demonstrated today at Shimla Pehari Lahore to demand land, food and water rights at all level for men and women. The demonstration was organised jointly by Pakistan Kissan Rabita Committee and Tameer-e-Nou Women Workers Organisation. The demonstrators demanded land rights for tenants of Pakistan including women.  Okara peasants have been victimised and jailed just for demanding land rights at Military Farms. Over 100 women were jailed during the last two years for demanding the land they have been cultivating over 100 years. The demonstrators also demanded clean drinking water system for all villages in Pakistan and right to food sovereignty.
Women demonstrators at Shimla Pehari

Farooq Tariq, general secretary Pakistan Kissan Rabita Committee, said that tackling problems underlying the food crisis demands that producers and consumers, including those in the global north, recognize that the causes of opposing crises of malnutrition and obesity are one in the same: an undemocratic, corporate-controlled food system. He said that small farmers and rural social movements around the globe are still struggling to transform food and agriculture 10 years after the world food crisis sparked widespread famine, hunger, and a wave of social unrest. He said that over 80 percent of farmers and peasants in Pakistan are deprived of clean water in the villages. There is a lack of proper sanitation system and infrastructure in most villages.   Farooq Tariq also said that from the global North to South, the right to food cannot be fully realized under the current industrial model of food production and distribution rather by radical transformations of the dominant socio-political and economic systems and social movement mobilizations.

Speaking on the occasion, Riffet Maqsood said that there is an ever increasing monopolization of control over the seeds and agricultural resources into corporate hands. These big agricultural companies are gravely threatening human rights, biodiversity and food sovereignty. She said that hunger and food insecurity are the results of concerted policy decisions that continue to prioritize trade liberalization, market-oriented solutions, corporate consolidation, and large-scale land grabs at the expense of Right to Food.   Riffet Maqsood said that following a decline in undernourishment for more than a decade, world hunger has been on the rise in recent years, with the estimated numbers of undernourished people increasing from 777 million in 2015 to 815 million in 2016, according to the U.N.’s Food and Agriculture Organization. Meanwhile, adult obesity has been rising at an accelerated rate in every region of the world, the FAO reports, bringing increased risks of health problems such as diabetes.   Demonstrators dispersed peacefully after an hour.

Press release issued by Nasir Iqbal  0300 4487344

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