Gas shortage hits Pindiites hard

The Sui Northern Gas Pipeline Limited (SNGPL) is continuously playing with public lives as the majority of families have been suffering from fever, cough, throat infections, flu, and several other cold-related diseases. The doctors have advised people to keep themselves warm to avoid cold-related diseases but from where could they get warmth without fire which was vanished from all areas, thanks to SNGPL which is continuously providing full-pressure gas to commercial consumers particularly in hotels and restaurants while domestic stoves have run out of gas for over a month. The supply of natural gas has vanished from over 80 per cent of areas of the city and cantonment board for a week but the authorities concerned are seeing the whole drama with closed eyes.

The residents of the city have appealed to the Chief Justice of Pakistan (CJP) to take suo moto notice of the issue as where is natural gas as SNGPL has failed to provide gas for domestic users.

On the other hand, residents of affected localities of Adiala Road, Jhanda Chichi, Jhanagir Road, Chaman Zar, Shah Khalid Colony, Shah Faisal Colony, Lalazar, Asharaf Colony, Ali Town, Munawar Colony and several other areas have decided to start protest demonstrations in all areas against SNGPL. The people of affected areas will stage a protest demonstration in front of the SNGPL office near Soan Camp today (Monday).

Some three days back, Managing Director (SNGPL) had directed General Manager (Rawalpindi Region) to provide full-pressure gas to consumers here in Rawalpindi but in vain. The Managing Director (SNGPL) expressed anger at the poor performance of SNGPL in the Rawalpindi Region. Some key post officials from SNGPL on condition of anonymity told ‘The News’ that there was enough gas quota for domestic users but corrupt officials were getting ‘money’ to provide full-pressure gas to commercial users. Hotels, restaurants, and pizza outlets were providing big amounts as ‘bribes’ to SNGPL officers to provide them full-pressure gas, the officers have claimed. All officers from top to bottom were involved in this corrupt practice, the officers said. The officers also said that SNGPL has stopped the gas supply completely for domestic users to provide full-pressure gas to commercial users.

Sui Northern Gas Pipelines Limited (SNGPL) Chief Engineer Allauddin Khan told ‘The News’ that they are laying down 2-inch pipelines in all areas to provide full pressure gas supply to domestic consumers. He was giving policy statements to save the skin of his bosses. He said that we will never spare black sheep in the department. He also said that they have launched a project to provide ‘gas cylinders’ to consumers at government-fixed rates. This project will control the shortage of natural gas in the winter season, he hoped.

SNGPL has stopped the supply of gas completely for six days in the areas of Adiala Road, Gulistan Colony, Committee Chowk, Munawwar Colony, Defence Road, Dhoke Kalhoor, Mubarak Lane, Qasim Market, Chakra, Misriyal, Shakriyal, Muslim Town, Sadiqabad, Kuri, Soan, Gulzar-e-Quaid, Girja, Tench, Dhoke Mangtal, Dhoke Syedan, Asghar Mall, Dhoke Hassu, Dhoke Ratta, Gharibabad, Scheme-III, Raheemabad, Nadeem Colony, Shah Faisal Colony, Tipu Road, Afshan Colony, Javed Colony, Dhoke Banaras, Ahmedabad, Bagh Sardaran, Pirwadhai, Bangash Colony, Jhanda Chichi, Jhanagir Road, Chaman Zar, Shah Khalid Colony, Shah Faisal Colony, Lalazar, Asharaf Colony, Ali Town, Munawar Colony, and several other areas. Even the gas-sucking compressors have failed to work for some days. In fact, Sui Northern Gas Pipelines Limited (SNGPL) has stopped supply in pipelines.

In this situation, the Liquefied Petroleum Gas (LPG) dealers are openly looting the public with both hands and selling 1-kilogram commodity at Rs300. The LPG dealers are not only misusing this situation but creating an artificial shortage to earn more profit. The residents of affected localities are buying three times meals at skyrocketing rates from hotels while others are wandering here and there in search of fire sources like dry wood, kerosene oil, coal, and expensive LPG. The hotel owners have increased the prices of meals by over 20

per cent and selling a plate of ‘daal’ at Rs250.



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