Stoppage of gas to CNG filling stations adds to citizens’ misseries

ISLAMABAD: The government’s decision to stop provision of natural gas to the CNG filling stations and industrial sector in the Punjab and the federal capital for a period of four months, has added to the misseries of the people.

Residents of the federal capital and its adjacent city Rawalpindi complained that due to stop of natural gas to the CNG filling stations, majority of public transport was disappeared from the roads, whereas the cab drivers were charging the fares of their choice on the contention that petrol was very costly.

Due to stoppage of natural gas to the CNG filling stations and industries, thousands of poor people, working on the CNG stations and industries have lost their jobs.

According to government sources natural gas would not be provided to the CNG stations and other industries in the Punjab and Islamabad from November 15 to March 15.

Although , the government has made this decision to ensure un-interrupted gas supply to the domestic consumers, and has given approval for gas load management plan for the winter season, however, gas supply to the CNG stations and industries will continue in Sindh and Khyber Pakhtunkhwa as usual.

Sources revealed that a meeting with regard to gas load management held by Minister for Petroleum Shahid Khaqan Abbasi decided that in winter season, the demand for gas by domestic consumers would increase, thus, it would not be possible to provide gas to the CNG sector as well as power sector.

Meanwhile, All Pakistan Compressed Natural Gas Association (APCNGA) central chairman Pervaiz Khan Khattak has said that the authorities have conveniently ignored plight of the masses, its negative impact on job market and the lurching CNG sector.

He said implementation of illegal gas load management plan would boost oil import bill, bring currency under renewed pressure and further affect trade balance while the government would lose billions in taxes.

He said the highly flawed decision would hurt tens of millions of people across the country, leave millions jobless and degrade urban environment at an unprecedented pace.

He said gas utilities, Oil and Gas Regulatory Authority (Ogra) and the government must turn away from the negative and unpopular policies which would choke growth and send a negative signal.

“The so-called business-friendly government has shocked the masses and entire CNG community by deciding to close the sector for four months”, he maintained.

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