APCNGA to initiate protests across country if gas supply not resorted

Islamabad: Chairman Supreme Council APCNGA Ghiyas Abdullah Paracha on Thursday said SNGPL has suspended supply of natural gas to CNG sector in Punjab for indefinite period without the approval of government and despite stiff opposition from the Planning Commission of Pakistan which is illegal and unconstitutional.

The unilateral and ill-timed decision has disturbed the daily life while posing serious threat to Rs 450 billion investments in the CNG sector, he said.

Speaking at a press conference here, he said that unlike others, CNG is the only sector which has no alternative to the natural gas which shuts down completely when supply is suspended. Government and the CNG operators have signed an agreement for supply of gas around the year which is being violated, he said.

Ghiyas Paracha said that all other sectors using natural gas have option to run their operation by using furnace oil or electricity but the government’s axe also falls on the CNG sector if it decides on favour of a break.

He said that load management means reduction in supply and that the CNG operators will not allow complete closure in the name of management which is total exploitation.

The SNGPL’s one-sided and mistaken decision has resulted in inflation, hike in transport fares, disturbance in daily life, black marketing of petrol, hike in LPG prices by Rs 40 per kg, and reduction in forex reserves which is pushing country toward a catastrophe, he informed.

On one hand government has been introducing employment schemes while on the other supporting decision which will result in massive unemployment and non-serviceability of tens of thousands of commercial and private vehicles, he observed.

The leader of the CNG sector said that our filling stations are closed across Punjab and there is reduced pressure in the provinces of Sindh and Khyber Pakhtoonkhwa but the domestic consumers are not getting gas which merits question that where it is flowing silently.

Paracha said that the decision of Supreme Court has proved that CNG sector has been paying highest tariff and maximum taxes but it is subjected to injustices. Gas suspension has left CNG owners unable to pay gas bills; how would they pay salaries, he questioned.

He said that suspension orders should be reversed, gas should be supplied to CNG outlets from 9 am to 7 pm without interruption, cases be registered against those responsible for gas crisis, and government should honour agreements.

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