Sunday December 03, 2023

KE’s monopoly over power supply in city to end by 2023, says energy minister

By Our Correspondent
September 14, 2022

The Sindh government will end the monopoly of Karachi’s sole power provider K-Electric (KE) by 2023. The announcement to this effect was made by Sindh Energy Minister Imtiaz Ahmed Shaikh as he addressed a press conference on Tuesday.

He said that if there were more than one electricity supply companies in Karachi, better facilities would be available to the citizens. More power companies, he said, would result in a healthy competition that would ultimately benefit the people.

Shaikh also quashed some social media reports about a possible change of the Sindh chief minister. He called such reports a conspiracy, saying that they had no connection with the reality.

“The chief minister is our captain and we are part of his team,” he maintained. The energy minister also berated Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) Chairman Imran Khan, saying he could not do away with his lust for power.

“He [Imran] should not be given importance,” Shaikh said as he referred to the PTI chairman’s recent statements regarding the coming appointment of a new army chief. The energy minister said that the procedure for the selection of army chief was mentioned in the constitution, and the appointment could not be made on someone’s wish.

He also announced that the provincial government would reconstruct the houses damaged due to the recent floods in the province. He said the leadership of the Pakistan Peoples Party (PPP) and Sindh government had continuously been working for the relief of the flood victims with the support and services of the armed forces, police, Rangers, welfare associations and volunteers. The ministers and members of assemblies belonging to the PPP had reached their people and were serving them, he added.

He said that 48,000 people were being provided three meals a day in relief camps and dry rations were also being provided in district Shikarpur. “Tent cities have been set up in all the affected areas across the province. We don't care about anyone's criticism. The government is doing its work honestly.”

He remarked that it was inappropriate on part of a political party to criticise the arrival of flood victims in the cities of Sindh. He also lamented that flood victims had been called robbers. “This is not the time to talk about locals and non-locals. Sindh is our land and we all belong to it,” he asserted.

He asked why flood victims could not come to cities for shelter when Afghan settlements could be established in Karachi. The PTI leadership had made false claims of collecting billions of rupees for the flood victims, Shaikh said. “If the money has been collected, why is it not being spent on the flood victims? Should this money be spent on politics instead of serving the flood victims like in the past?” he asked as he alleged that the money collected by the PTI in the name of flood victims was being spent on political activities.

The energy minister said that the Dadu Grid Station had been spared from damage by the floods, but electricity poles and supply lines had been damaged. He claimed that due to the successful strategy of PPP Chairman and Foreign Minister Bilawal Bhutto Zardari, the entire world’s attention had been on the flood victims. The visit of the United Nations secretary general was also a result of the efforts of Bilawal and the federal government, he said.

Shaikh said that the PTI had showed its anti-national politics even during the agreement with the IMF. “The PTI is still trying through social media to prevent the international community from helping the flood victims,” he alleged. “The secretary general of the United Nations also saw the disaster with his own eyes and said that it is a disaster that cannot be described in words,” Shaikh said.