January 11, 2022 (MLN): The NA standing Committee on Power informed that the circular debt stock is declining and will come down to Rs1.880 trillion by the end of the current fiscal year, said a press release on Monday.
The committee which met under the Chairmanship of Chaudhry Salik Hussain, MNA, was told that the circular debt has reached a staggering 2.28 trillion rupees as of today, but it was contradicted by the Members and the Secretary was asked to verify the stats as Mr. Salik Hussain, Chairman of the Committee pointed out that circular debt is in fact rising by Rs.35 billion per month. It was further told that due to the recent steps taken by the Government the circular debt could be reduced to 1.89 trillion rupees by June, 2022.
The Members of the Committee were perturbed over the recent price hike in the electricity tariff which was also approved by NEPRA. They opined that this increase will affect all commodity prices and will massively burden the poor people. NEPRA attributed the price hike to the increase in fuel prices.
The Members said that Pakistan is an Agri based country, agriculturists should be facilitated for getting tube well connections, and rather they face extreme difficulties and have to wait for months to get the connections. The Committee strongly recommended that the procedure should be made hassle-free for getting tube well connections and a period of 2 months is enough for the DISCOS, for giving these connections.
On the related question raised in the house by various Members regarding the load shedding, high voltage transmission lines passing over residential areas, up-gradation of electricity infrastructure, the appointment of technical staff in electric distribution companies and other related problems of electricity in their constituencies, the Members were highly critical of rampant corruption and the attitude of the staff in different DISCOs.
The Secretary was asked to submit a comprehensive report in this regard in the next scheduled meeting and also to review supplier vendors for each DISCOS which has in fact become a mafia, to which delays are happening as many DISCOS have only engaged one contractor who has a monopoly over the entire DISCO to which delays are happening in supplying of equipment for new connections. On the insistence of Members from KPK and Baluchistan, the Committee appointed a Sub Committee under the Convener ship of Malik Anwar Taj, MNA to look into and address the issues in the regions of KPK and Baluchistan. MNAS, Mr. Sher Akbar Khan. Mr. Zahid Akram Durrani and Mr. Muhammad Israr Tareen would be the other members of the Sub-Committee.
The meeting was attended by MNA's Mr. Sher Akbar Khan, Malik Anwar Taj, Mr. Saif Ur Rehman, Mr. Lal Chand, Mr. Muhammad Israr Tareen, Ms. Saira Bano, Mian Riaz Hussain Pirzada, Shazia Marri, Mr. Zahid Akram Durrani, and Movers besides Secretary from M/o Power Division & Senior Officers of the relevant departments.
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