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KARACHI: Commissioner Karachi Muhammad Iqbal Memon on Saturday issued new orders to shut down markets and shopping malls in the metropolis by 8:30 pm.

The development comes a day after the federal government instructed the Sindh government to enforce the energy conservation plan, as per which all markets will be shut at 8:30 pm.

Ministry of Inter-Provincial Coordination wrote a letter to Chief Minister Sindh Syed Murad Ali Shah, urging to ensure the implementation of an energy conservation plan across the province.

In a letter addressed to all deputy commissioners, the Karachi commissioner has directed authorities concerned to ensure closure of markets by 8:30pm and restaurants, wedding halls at 10pm. The letters urged DCs to execute the energy saving plan devised by the federal government in their respective districts.

Energy Conservation Plan: DCs in Sindh asked to furnish compliance report

However, the city traders resented the new timings. They said that such decisions would not prove fruitful, rather they would slow down the wheel of already sluggish economy.

They also lamented that the government did not consult all the stakeholders (traders) while taking this decision.

They were of the view that shutting down markets early was no solution to the energy problem. They asked the government to find some other ways to sort this issue.

The move is a part of the government’s energy conservation plan announced by Shehbaz Sharif government last month.

Briefing media about the decisions taken in a cabinet meeting, Khawaja Asif had said that the energy conservation plan would help Pakistan to save 8,000 to 9,000 megawatts of electricity and Rs 62 billion in a year.

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