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October 20, 2019

Right price for the right stuff!


October 20, 2019

Islamabad Capital Territory (ICT) administration has good news for the residents. Soon they will be able to get items of their daily use delivered to their houses on the prices fixed by the administration.

Islamabad Chief Commissioner Amir Ali Ahmed (AAA) is satisfied that his office was able to pull it off in coordination with National IT Board (NITB). Confident about success of the programme, AAA told me in his office that the app named ‘Durust Daam’ (right price) has finally been developed. The app has been put to trial and citizens can use it now.

Residents can have this app on their cell phones and avail this service. “All has been finalised,” he said.

He explained that the federal capital has over 4,000 shops and only eight magistrates to ensure price control. The shopkeepers used to violate the price list and get away with it in most cases. “It has been reported that when a consumer asks for the official price, the shopkeepers reply that get your stuff from the office concerned at their price,” he said.

“To resolve this problem, we have developed an app. In the days to come, citizens will be able to use this APP on a large scale. We will make sure that stuff is delivered to houses of the consumers with no additional delivery charges,” he said.

He said that the district administration has worked with market committees to make this idea work. The prices that citizens will pay will be 5 per cent less than the official price and a bit higher than the wholesale market rates.

In the first phase, the system is being set up in regular residential sectors of the city. Overpricing is rampant in posh areas like F and E series of sectors. But no one is out there to give free delivery in any sector, AAA said, hence the system is equally beneficial to all residents.

In the second phase, its range will be extended to rural Islamabad too. It, however, remains a fact that nothing rural is left anymore in the federal capital. All the land has gone into a kind of thicket of housing societies that have crept all around the city. It will be a great service if the system is extended to all areas sooner than later.

Deputy Commissioner Muhammad Hamza Shafqat says, “We are just waiting for finalization of the system.” We hope that it will be finalized shortly. Islamabad perhaps will be the first city in the country to have such a facility.

Credit for citizen-friendly initiatives surely goes to these two energetic and elegant officers as their contribution is un-put-down-able.

Generally, the offices of the chief commissioner and his deputy are perceived as the last remains of the British Raj, where the masses are cut to size behind closed doors and in open courts. But Islooites are blessed to have both of these offices manned by thorough professionals, humble and humane officers.

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