The PML-N government last month approved the temporary ban on the import of around three dozen luxury and essential items. Pet food is also subjected to an import ban.
The move resulted in criticism from pet owners and veterinarians who protested against the ban. Pet owners are also finding it difficult to buy pet food as there is a shortage in the market.
News anchor Gharidah Farooqi, who is a staunch supporter of the coalition government, was also critical of the decision. This time she appealed to Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif to lift the pet food import ban.
“It’s been more than two weeks that Pet Food import remains banned in Pakistan. Request to PM Shehbaz, kindly lift this ban. Please listen to the pleas of voiceless creatures waiting for you to show mercy. Almost NIL impact on import bill. Why not then?!” Gharidah Farooqi tweeted.
Interestingly, PML-N Vice President Maryam Nawaz responded and asked Finance Minister Miftah Ismail to look into the matter.
— Maryam Nawaz Sharif (@MaryamNSharif) June 6, 2022
Criticism from netizens
Needless to say, both Gharidah Farooqi and Maryam Nawaz have been receiving flak on social media for seemingly prioritizing pet food over food for humans.
While netizens agreed that being sympathetic towards animals is necessary, they also claimed that a ban on pet food imports is not a big deal. According to netizens, animals can eat locally produced pet food or pet owners can feed their pets the same food they eat. However, the plight of the public should be prioritized as there are many families who are struggling to make ends meet due to inflation.
بے شک جانوروں کی خوراک وحقوق ہم پر فرض ہیں مگر کاش انسانوں کی خوراک اور انکے بنیادی حقوق کیلیےبھی اتنا زور دیا جاتا، کیونکہ کتنے لوگ دو وقت کے نوالے کو ترس رھے ہیں جن کی بنیادی وجہ جن سے آپ التجاٸیں فرما رہی ہیں انہی ٢خاندانوں کی لوٹ مار اور کرپشن ھے۔جو آپ نہیں جانتی تو کون پھر؟
— Mudassir Zafar (@Mudassi78261304) June 6, 2022
Meanwhile, Maryam Nawaz too drew public ire for the same matter. Her quick response to Gharidah Farooqi over pet food resulted in backlash. Maryam Nawaz also came under criticism for tagging Finance Minister Miftah Ismail and giving him “orders” despite holding no public office.
Ooo… And who's she to dictate this to the 'selected' minister of this imported government?
— عنبر (@AmberTweets5) June 6, 2022