PESHAWAR: Members of the business community out-rightly rejected the recent unprecedented increase of 300 to 355 percent in fixed charges of electricity for industrial consumers, stating that imposition of fixed charges on domestic consumers is highly unjust, which would further make life of common man miserable.

Businessmen said the unprecedented increase in fixed charges was tantamount to destruction of industries and burying people alive. The traders warned of the government for launching an agitation campaign. They also made it clear that if in case, the decision couldn’t be withdrawn immediately, aggressive and harsh steps would be taken against unfair and unjust hike in fixed charges, and government and relevant authorities will be responsible for any unfortunate incident, he added.

Faud Ishaq, president of the Sarhad Chamber of Commerce and Industry talking to this scribe on Saturday said the government and NEPRA had made a whopping increase in fixed charges from 300 to 355 percent for industrial consumers, which was completely unjust, unfair and pushed industry to further destruction and was tantamount to putting the last nail in the coffin of this important sector. Attempts are initiated to add the ordeals of the business community, which is highly condemnable, Faud Ishaq said. He vowed the business community will strongly resist anti-industry and business policies and be forced to widely agitate.

Owing to flawed policies of the government, he added, the industrial growth has slowed down and a number of units were shut down in the province. He warned industries will completely close and trigger further unemployment so it is essential to revisit overall policies and let industries and economy flourish.

The SCCI chief said it is totally incomprehensible that consumers are already paying charges on units and there is no justification for imposing fixed charges on consumers, he added.

Faud Ishaq demanded privatization of all power distribution companies (DISCOs) if those discos which were unable to sale like PESCO, so such one should be handed over to the Pakistan Army.

Copyright Business Recorder, 2024

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