Daily Archives: September 22, 2008

The neglected landless of Pakistan

The neglected landless

Dr. Zafar Altaf

Pakistan has as much as 44 percent landless in the country and the number is growing because the ability of the agriculture sector to absorb them in gainful employment is limited. Percentage terms create an illusion that is not necessary and, therefore, I will be discussing absolute numbers. The number of landless by provinces would indicate where poverty is rampant and where the numbers are less. But that by itself may not be correct because the number of landless may be indicated as not so severe in Balochistan whereas the fact is that it is the most seriously affected province and the severely handicapped province has been made to suffer even more because the current fight against terror has severely affected the trading possibilities that were present in the province.

I always maintained that Quetta area was and is where success of capitalism is visible. Government officials used to talk of smuggling and I used to talk of free trade. Quetta serves as a prime example of faulty man-made policies, a fetish to try and control every aspect of human life. This attitude emanates from the colonialist era when their colonial masters tyrannised the subcontinent subjects. Continue reading

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