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Imran Khan's PTI blames Shehbaz Sharif led govt for inflated power bills

With protests erupting over inflated power bills, PTI secretary general Omar Ayub Khan said the PML-N government was responsible for the "inflated and unbearable" electricity bills

Shehbaz Sharif

He stated further that the PML-N was making the country dependent on expensive imported energy, as the capacity payments due to take-and-pay contracts had touched PKR 2,000 billion this year.

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The Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) blamed the Pakistan Muslim League-N party for the rising cost of electricity, warning that power tariffs might jump to around Pakistani Rupee (PKR) 85 per unit in the next few months, Dawn reported.
With protests erupting over inflated power bills, PTI secretary general Omar Ayub Khan said the PML-N government was responsible for the "inflated and unbearable" electricity bills.
He stated further that the PML-N was making the country dependent on expensive imported energy, as the capacity payments due to take-and-pay contracts had touched PKR 2,000 billion this year.
"PML-N made Pakistan dependent on expensive imported energy and today 70 per cent of the electricity produced in Pakistan is dependent on imported fuels," he said.
The fuel price adjustments were getting higher due to the rupee's devaluation, he said, claiming that the price of electricity had jumped by more than four times in just 15 months - from PKR 16 per unit during PTI's tenure to PKR 68 per unit, Dawn reported.
After the surge in electricity bills, the general public and traders' associations staged protests in multiple cities and later this matter went to Pakistan caretaker Prime Minister Anwarul-Haq Kakar. Looking at the matter, he called an emergency meeting on Sunday.
The Express Tribune reported that the caretaker premier called the meeting in Islamabad and directed the energy ministry and the electricity distribution companies to give a detailed briefing in this regard.
As per the statement from Pakistan's PMO, consultations will be held regarding giving maximum relief to consumers regarding electricity bills.
Earlier, a protest in Karachi, which was also supported by Jamaat-e-Islami (JI), demanded a reduction in the ever-increasing electricity prices and additional taxes imposed through power bills.
Addressing the protesters, JI's Karachi Amir Hafiz Naeemur Rehman, warned that if the government continues to burden the public, the situation could further deteriorate. "Our struggle is against the white-collar mafia in KE," he said, underscoring the commitment to represent the people's interests, reported The Express Tribune.
At a similar protest in Pakistan's Rawalpindi, the demonstrators raised slogans against Islamabad Electric Supply Company.
The publication reported that protests were also staged in Lahore, Attock, Peshawar, Quetta, Taunsa, Hyderabad, Nawabshah, Rahim Yar Khan and Multan against the inflated electricity bills. A large number of people participated in the demonstrations.
Earlier, a report stated that Pakistan is burdened with costly plants and commitments that people have been struggling to pay for, The News International reported.
Pakistanis paid Rs 41 billion for partial load adjustment charges in 2022, resulting from the underutilisation of thermal power plants (with only 46 per cent utilization) and Rs 721 billion in capacity payments, the report noted.

(Only the headline and picture of this report may have been reworked by the Business Standard staff; the rest of the content is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)

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First Published: Aug 27 2023 | 10:23 AM IST

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