Load shedding mars economy of Karachi: Pasban


Karachi: Karachi-Electric (KE) has blacked out the economy of Karachi, said Pasban e Pakistan here on Tuesday.

During a recent hearing on KE petition in the Nepra Court Islamabad, Pasban e Pakistan Public Issues Committee director and senior vice president of Pasban e Pakistan Azam Minhas presented the stance of his party in the presence of Nepra Chairman Brig (retd) Tariq Sadozai. He said the KE had marred and blacked out the economy of Karachi, says a Pasban release.

He said through jugglery of figures the rights of electricity consumers of Karachi were being violated. He said the relief of Rs0.4 per unit is a joke. He said in fact the relief of Rs0.8 in April 2015 and of Rs0.9 per unit in May 2015 is the right of electricity consumers of Karachi.

Pasban submitted before the court that more than 3000 people died in Karachi recently due to major breakdowns, poor performance of KE and its faulty power distribution system. Is there no value of human life in this country?

Pasban suggested that the quarterly hearing for the months of April, May and June should be held in Karachi so that the electricity consumers of Karachi could be provided opportunity to submit their complaints and objections.

Pasban said that the figures show that in April 2015 on the basis of the unit distributed the relief and cut in tariff stands at Rs0.7 per unit, but strangely the KE suggested the relief of Rs0.4 per unit, which is a joke. This matter should be investigated thoroughly.

In March 2015 the rate of furnace oil was Rs41641 per metric ton and in April Rs38623 per metric ton. In this way the KE got furnace oil for producing electricity cheaper by Rs3018 per metric ton and hence the production cost remained 7.81 percent low which means reduction of production cost of Rs0.8 per unit and its benefit should be transferred to the electricity consumers of the city.

Pasban also argued about the tariff of May 2015. It said the KE has suggested cut of Rs0.45 per unit, but according the Pasban calculation the relief should stand at Rs0.9 per unit. It also submitted that O and M Payment accounts for the month of May 2015 have been missing mysteriously, but Nepra is still tight-lipped despite passage of two months.

Pasban said that KE produces 75percent of electricity from gas with production cost of just Rs4.6 per unit. The production cost through furnace oil is Rs11 per unit, while the KE is purchasing electricity from IPPs/NTDC at the rate of Rs6.12 per unit. Therefore, why the electricity consumers of Karachi should bear the extra burden of Rs5 per unit?

Pasban suggested that the IPPs/NTDC should be given authority to directly provide cheaper electricity to the power consumers of Karachi. If the KE after getting 650 megawatts electricity from NTDC can supply 2928 megawatts electricity to the consumers there would be zero load shedding in Karachi. The consumers of Karachi are paying for 15percent transmission and distribution (T&D) losses of electricity in the city. In this way they carry the additional burden of almost 244 million units and still braving the menace of load shedding and bogus billing.

Pasban requested the Nepra could play a pivotal role in getting electricity consumers of Karachi rid of this fleecing.