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Senate body orders Nepra to solve overbilling, power outages’ problems

  • July 28, 2021

ISLAMABAD – The chairman Senate Standing committee on Cabinet Secretariat directed the Ogra officials to introduce a mechanism for the check and balance of disparity in oil pricing, the misconduct in the services provided by the petrol stations and on the use of impurities in the petroleum products.

A meeting of the Senate Standing Committee on Cabinet Secretariat was held under the chairmanship of Senator Rana Maqbool Ahmad at the Parliament House yesterday.

A detailed briefing on the working and performance of the Oil and Gas Regulatory Authority (Ogra), National Electric Power Regulatory Authority (Nepra) was received by the committee members. The Public Petition PP-3745 pertaining to PTDC, submitted by Malik Muhammad Khan, Chairman MK Pakistan, referred by Chairman Senate on 29th June, 2021 was also considered.

The committee was apprised by the chairman Ogra that total numbers of 1566 complaints have been received through Pakistan Citizen Portal out of which 1389 have been resolved and 25 have been forwarded to departments for action. The committee was also informed that 1137 complaints have been received through Clean and Green Pakistan out of which 1000 are oil complaints and 137 are CNG related complaints. Rs18, 50,000   fines have been imposed on these complaints.

Senator Rana Maqbool Ahmed asked the Ogra chairman as to what is the wisdom in recommending increase of Rs 10 to 15 in prices of petrol and diesel which is later reduced by the government thereby adding insult to the injuries of the common people.  The price hike in LPG within two weeks is considered as matter of serious concern.  The Chairman Ogra was asked to furnish report to the committee within fortnight showing tangible improvements in the performance his department.

The Ogra officials informed that the LC evaluates the price relying on the International Crude Market, along with variable taxes. The committee members lamented that the high octane product has not been given in one price on different petrol stations. Senator Engr Rukhsana Zuberi raised the point on the grant of licence to the oil industry. The officials of the Ogra informed the committee that if the stock cannot be stored above 20 days the licence is not provided.  The committee received a comprehensive briefing on the working and performance of the Nepra.  The Nepra officials informed the committee that 40per cent of Nepra losses have come down by 21per cent. The committee members showed resentment on the poor working of the Wapda authorities.

 Senator Khalida Ateeb dismayed that the increasing electricity bill is resulting in the increasing miseries of the common people. The committee members discussed in details the problem of load shedding and mal functioning of the transformers, leaving the common public in pain and agony. 

The Chairman Committee directed the Nepra officials to prepare report within a fortnight on the initiatives taken on over billing and repair of transformers in order to rectify the problems of the public. He also urged the Chairman Nepra to improve performance of his department which is far from satisfactory standard.

A detailed discussion on the Public Petition PP-3745 pertaining to PTDC, submitted by Malik Muhammad Khan, Chairman MK Pakistan referred by Chairman Senate on 29th June, 2021 was considered. The Chairman Committee deferred the Petition for 10th August with the direction to the official of the PTDC to consult The PTDC Board, for a way forward in a legal framework, on the disputed land, and give report in the next meeting for further deliberation.

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