ISLAMABAD: Awami National Party (ANP) says it will mobilise the people of Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa (K-P) to stop paying electricity bills, if the federal government increases the power tariff and fails to pay the net hydel profit to the province.
This was stated by ANP acting President Senator Haji Mohammad Adeel and party senior leader Zahid Khan while addressing a press conference on Monday.
They said the federal government buys electricity from the K-P at Rs1.2 per unit and charges Rs14 per unit to the consumers. Additionally, the senators said, the Centre has not paid billions of accumulated outstanding amount in the head of net hydel profit to the province which generates electricity at the cheapest rate and supplies to the whole country.
“On one hand, our province [K-P] is deprived of the electricity despite generating more than its requirement and at the same time, it doesn’t get the net hydel profit from the Centre,” maintained Adeel.
He further said that government paid more than Rs450 billion in the head of circular debts, but K-P’s net hydel profit is still unpaid by the Centre for an year. He pointed out that K-P is producing gas, oil and electricity more than its requirement and gives it to the Centre, but it never gets the royalty of this in time.
“We will be compelled to demand for autonomy except defence, foreign affairs, communication and currency, if the government continued to opt its callous policy against smaller federating units”, he maintained. ANP leaders said that the federal government is planning to generate power in Punjab through solar system at a cost of Rs18 per unit, which would be an extra burden on the common man and K-P will not bear this extravagance.
They questioned why government did not allocate funds for constructing the Monda dam, where 1,000 mw of cheap electricity could be produced. Besides, there is a potential for generating 25,000mw electricity through hydel power, but the government is not considering this cheap source of power.
Senator Zahid lambasted the State Minister for Water and Power Abid Sher Ali, who had blamed that the K-P has high rate of power theft. “I can challenge the highest rate of power theft is in Punjab and we are the cheap producer of the electricity,” said Khan. He demanded that the minister should tender his apology to the people of K-P and withdraw his statement.
He said that ANP lawmakers have submitted adjournment motions in senate and NA against the tariff hike and would mobilise the public against the callous decision of the government.