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If the government does not allows us to increase water tariff or reduce Electricity Tariff citizens would suffer: Misbahuddin Farid

Karachi, April 23, 2013 (PPI-OT): Managing Director Karachi Water and Sewerage Board (KW and SB) Misbahuddin Farid has stated that in 2002 Karachi Water and Sewerage Board requested NEPRA that since KW and SB is a public service institution our Electric Tariff should not be Commercial Tariff. However NEPRA ignoring this fact gave a verdict in favour of a Private Commercial Entity K.E.S.C, which is not only a grave decision but a joke with Citizens of Karachi and Largest Public Service Entity of the country.

He said that after taking a strict stance under Tariff Rules 1998 Section 3(1), NEPRA held a pre-admit meeting held in front of Members of NEPRA. Later on, interveners were invited through newspapers and a hearing was held in Karachi.

In this hearing Barrister Farogh Naseem represented KW and SB, where as representative of Karachi Electric Supply Corporation (KESC), Industrialist Arif Bilwani, Qazi Ahmed of Chamber of Commerce, Ashraf Ali of Cantonment Boards and Shumail Butt of Finance Department, Government of Khyber Pakhtunkhuwa (KP)were also present as interveners. During the meeting it was accepted that since KW and SB is a public service entity Commercial Electric Billing is not just.

He said that in their reply NEPRA accepted our stance under section 15.1, 15.4, 15.5, 15.6 and 15.7 that 80% electric billing to KW and SB is under Industrial and Commercial Consumer category however, KW and SB does not fall in this category, whereas, all other water supply institutions are billed under the agricultural category.

NEPRA also accepted that a separate tariff must be formulated for KW and SB and all public service institutions and NEPRA may also take Suo-Moto actions under rule number 3(1). Whereas, KW and SB is providing water to its stake holders and other utility entities on very low rates which does not helps our financial situation.

He said that despite the fact that NEPRA and Interveners accepted the factual KW and SB stance, NEPRA gave its verdict against KW and SB. Since KESC of the stance that if KW and SB tariff is changed from Commercial to Industrial or any other category, KESC would not bear the charges. After 6 months, NEPRA in-spite of coming up with a solution gave its verdict against KW and SB.

NEPRA who answered almost after 6 months of the hearing seems to be concerned about the fallout rather than the factious KW and SB stance that it is neither industrial nor commercial organization therefore must be exempted from the list.

He said that, this leaves KW and SB with no choice but either to accept that decision demanding the Government of Sindh to allow KW and SB an increase in tariff or take the matter to the court letting the citizens suffers while the court decided the matter.

We uphold the lifeline to the economic backbone of the country and it is therefore our moral and religious duty that we perform the task with all our strengths. The systems we are working with are more than 20 years old; moreover, NEPRA has placed us in a very delicate position.

Now if the Government does not allows us to increase the water tariff or reduces the Electricity Tariff it seems inevitable that the citizens would suffer. The revenue differences are not allowing us to complete the developmental work which is necessary for the system to operate smoothly in the days to come.

For more information contact:
Karachi Water and Sewerage Board
Mr. Zahid Mehmood
P.S. Chairman Office
Tel: 99240819
Fax-99245136

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