SHC approached against increase in petroleum prices

By our correspondents
January 31, 2023

A petition was filed with the Sindh High Court (SHC) on Monday challenging the recent increase in the petroleum products’ prices, including the Rs35 hike in the price of one litre of petrol.

The petitioner, Moulvi Iqbal Haider, submitted in the plea that the federal government had announced a record hike in the prices petroleum products, increasing the price per litre of petrol from Rs214.80 to Rs249.80, and that of diesel from Rs227 to Rs262.80. Similarly, the price of kerosene was raised from Rs171.83 to Rs189.83 per litre, and that of light diesel from Rs169 to Rs187 per litre.

He submitted that the petroleum prices were increased without any justification. He said that people of the country were already facing uncontrolled inflation in all the necessary commodities.

The petitioner submitted that the prices of all the necessary items with regard of life, liberty and dignity of the people shall automatically increase after the increase in petroleum prices and the general public had no resources to bear such inflation. He said that the poor and middle classes would be forced to live from hand to mouth.

The SHC was requested to declare the impugned notification with regard to the increase in petroleum prices to be in violation of the law and Constitution. The petitioner also sought a declaration that any increase in the prices of petroleum products required approval of Parliament in terms of the Article 77 of the Constitution. He also requested the high court to direct the federal government to submit a formula before the court under which it increased the prices of petroleum products.

PTI submits resolution

The Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) parliamentary leader in the Sindh Assembly, Khurrum Sher Zaman, on Monday submitted two resolutions to the provincial assembly demanding withdrawal of the recent increase in petroleum prices and condemning desecration of the Holy Quran in Sweden and Netherlands.

After submitting the resolutions, the PTI leader spoke to the media said that he condemned the increase of Rs35 in the per-liter price of petrol by the federal government. “This is a very devastating ‘homecoming’ gift to Maryam Nawaz who kept on telling us to be patient as Ishaq Dar had all the solutions to the economic problems of Pakistan,” he remarked.

He said that when Imran Khan was removed as the prime minister in a regime change operation, the price of petrol was Rs 150 per litre and that of diesel was Rs144.15 per litre.

He said that the record-high price of petrol and diesel would result in another wave of inflation that would shatter the poor and middle classes and increase the cost of doing business for the industries.

He explained that he had demanded in the resolution an immediate reversal of the price increase and resignation of federal finance minister Ishaq Dar.

The second resolution, the PTI parliamentary leader said, condemned the desecration of the Holy Quran by individuals in Sweden and the Netherlands. Zaman described such acts as hateful and despicable acts that had hurt the sentiments of all the Muslims around the world.

“Our resolution recommends the Government of Pakistan summon the ambassadors of Sweden and The Netherlands and express the strong sentiments, shock and rage felt by the people of Pakistan against the desecration of the Holy Quran. Furthermore, the Government of Pakistan should raise this matter on all international forums available to it,” reads the resolution.

Zaman lamented that Western countries condemn such Islamophobic incidents but never acted against the perpetrators on the excuse of ‘freedom of expression.’ “We know this is true hypocrisy, as many Western countries have holocaust-denial laws showing that they also don’t believe in free speech as an absolute right,” he remarked.