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February 13, 2020

Rs46.28 tax being charged on one litre diesel, Senate told

Peshawar

February 13, 2020

ISLAMABAD: The Senate was informed on Tuesday that the first ever shale gas well KUC-01 drilling was in progress and as on January 30, 2020, the well was drilled to depth of 2,487 meters, to be drilled down to 3,910 meters in Chiltan formation.

During the question hour, Minister for Energy Omar Ayub Khan, in a written reply to a question by Sassui Palijo, said that OGDCL was drilling an experimental and first ever dedicated shale gas well (Kunar Unconventional-I) near Hyderabad. The gas well was spudded on December 14, 2019.

He explained that currently OGDCL and United Energy Petroleum Limited were undertaking shale gas/oil exploration projects in Sindh. As regards oil and gas exploration, he said that there were currently 38 active exploration licenses awarded to both local and foreign oil companies, which were undertaking exploration studies and projects in these awarded licenses.

Moreover, he said five new exploration blocks had been identified in Sindh and sent to the Ministry of Defence for security clearance.

The House witnessed token walk-out by the Senators belonging to opposition to agitate absence of ministers during the question. They alleged it was now a norm that Federal Minister for Parliamentary Affairs Muhammad Azam Swati was there always to speak on behalf of other ministers. However, Senators returned to the House moments after JUI-Fazl Senator had pointed out lack of quorum and after counting, the chair called for ringing of bells.

They agitated when Chairman Senate Muhammad Sadiq Sanjrani deferred questions relating to Minister for Water Resources Faisal Vawda, who had written to the Senate Secretariat that he was in the Federal Cabinet meeting and would himself reply to supplementary questions by the Senators.

The chair also asked Swati that side by side with the cabinet, the ministers should ensure their presence in the Senate in relation to their business.

To a question by Senator Sassui Palijo, Omar Ayub said that Rs46. 28 taxes were being collected on Rs127.26 per litre diesel, Rs35.55 on Rs116.60 petrol per litre, Rs20.45 on Rs99.45 per litre SKO and Rs15.28 on Rs84.51 per litre LDO, as on February 01, 2020.

He explained that taxes and levies were imposed on petroleum products to meet budgetary revenue targets for the growth and development of the country therefore taxes might not be abolished.

Senators protested on presence of children begging at various intersections and markets of the federal capital. They called for questioning the police officers of respective areas and sectors for letting them the beggars in. They said that this unfortunate trend was a matter of shame. Minister Swati agreed that the issue was very serious and there should be no concession to anyone on this count. He said the chair might give ruling and call the minister concerned to explain why children were seen begging in the federal capital.

The Senate Chairman Muhammad Sadiq Sanjrani asked Swati that the Minister for Interior should give statement on this issue in the House.