KARACHI: CNG stations across Sindh will remain closed for 48 hours as the Sui Southern Gas Company Limited (SSGC) increases its gas supply to K-Electric, as the power crisis in Pakistan’s largest city continues to test people’s patience.
After Prime Minister Imran Khan took notice of the power crisis in Karachi on Thursday, the SSGC will supply an additional 40mmcfd gas to K-Electric. As per the contract between K-Electric and SSGC, the gas supply company is providing an additional 100mmcfd gas to K-Electric.
The power distribution company has complained of fuel adjustment for the increased hours of loadshedding throughout the city. The additional supply of gas to K-Electric means industries in Sindh will not be supplied gas for three days and CNG stations across the province will remain closed for 48 hours.
The Site Association of Trade and Industry and the All Pakistan CNG Association have termed the move by the SSGC as ‘unacceptable’, urging the government to review its decision. The two bodies said that power plants can also be run on furnace oil instead of gas.
On the other hand, the K-Electric spokesperson said that the power distribution company’s management had met various trade organisations from Korangi, SITE and North Karachi to inform them about the issues being faced in supplying electricity to the city.
He said that power supply from the Kanupp power plant has been suspended since July 2 and IPPs are also supplying less power.
SSGC rejects K-Electric’s claim of gas supply shortage
Last month, the SSGC dismissed claims of reducing gas supply to KE and maintained that the supply had been increased from 50 million cubic feet (MMcf) to 240 MMcf.
“Despite a shortage of gas, more gas is being supplied to the power distributor,” the SSGC spokesperson had said.
The intensity of power outages in the metropolis has risen in the past week and have made life miserable for Karachi’s residents, already enduring a trying summer with temperatures sometimes crossing 40°C.
Enraged citizens have taken to the streets to protest against the prolonged outages.
Various neighbourhoods of Korangi and Gulistan-e-Jauhar, Liaquatabad, North Karachi, Kharadar, F B Area, Khadda Market, Lyari, and Orangi Town have been experiencing frequent power outages.
Residents found it increasingly difficult to stay indoors even as a lockdown was enforced in many parts due to the coronavirus outbreak.
Some areas, such as Liaquatabad C1, reported power restoration after an 18-hour long outage, only to be disrupted again.