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KARACHI: Supreme Court of Pakistan on Tuesday ordered the audit of K-Electric (KE) and sought the complete timeline from power utility for end of loadshedding in metropolis for August 13, 2020.

The apex court also sought the details from KE about its power generation capacity, current electricity generation and demand when its three-member bench headed by Chief Justice of Pakistan (CJP) Justice Gulzar Ahmed took up the case related to deaths due to electrocution and loadshedding in the city.

At the outset of the hearing, SC bench came hard on KE. KE Chief Executive Officer (CEO) Moonis Alvi and National Electric Power Regulatory Authority (NEPRA) Chairman Tauseef H Farooqi appeared before the court.

"The name of the KE CEO should be put on the ECL," said the CJP, adding that a detailed audit of the company should be conducted. The chief justice said that KE should be ready to face every kind of accountability by the authorities.

The apex court also ordered to register an FIR of electrocution deaths in the port city against K-Electric officials and ruled that from now onwards the cases of deaths caused by electrocution in the mega city will be registered against KE and its officials.

"You don't have the right for power cuts in the city," Justice Aijaz ul Ahsan told K-Electric CEO and asked him to overcome electricity shortage.

KE's counsel informed the court that the main reason behind power outages in the port city was power theft, inviting remarks from the CJP, who said: "why the power utility had yet not taken any action against those involved in power theft. Have you come here to tell me that loadshedding is happening due to theft?

I don't want to hear this excuse again. The city should not witness even a minute's loadshedding, he said, warning that if power outages continued the only places without electricity will be KE's offices and homes of its officials.

The CJP further warned that he would suspend KE's license, asking NEPRA chairman what would be an alternative to KE, and why does not the regulator take any action against the company?

NEPRA chairman told the court that the authority does take action against KE, but it obtains stay orders from court. The court ordered Nepra to furnish the details of all stay orders related to KE.

The court also ordered Attorney General for Pakistan to make functional the tribunals pertaining to cases against KE.

KE CEO Moonis Alvi replied that they had invested Rs2.5billion in 10 years, and added at least 1,000MW to the power system. To which, the CJP remarked: "You people only talk and do no work. Do you have the ability to understand and share the feelings of those whose humble abodes are without electricity the entire night? Women curse you." The CJP further observed that it seemed as if the people of Karachi were being made to pay for all the losses.

Copyright Business Recorder, 2020