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CNG sector warns of protests

Islamabad: Responding to a government action to close all Punjab CNG stations in winter months, the CNG sector has warned that it would initiate protests across the country if gas supply was not restored.

Based on severe gas shortage in the country, the federal government decided to cut off gas supplies to all CNG stations in Punjab during December, January and February from the ongoing week.

Chairman, Supreme Council of All-Pakistan CNG Association, Ghiyas Abdullah Paracha, at a press conference here on Thursday termed the shutdown illegal and claimed that the SNGPL had suspended supply of natural gas to the CNG sector in Punjab for an indefinite period which is illegal and unconstitutional as the decision had been taken without the approval of the government and despite strong opposition by the Planning Commission.

Mr Paracha informed that the APCNGA would call on the Minister for Petroleum on Friday to get issue resolved. “Otherwise, we will be compelled to initiate nationwide peaceful protests and the government will be responsible for all financial loss and the loss of jobs in this sector.

He also appealed to the Prime Minister to intervene to save millions of jobs related to CNG.

Mr Paracha said that unlike others, CNG is the only sector which has no alternative and suspension of gas supply had caused shutdown of the sector.

“The government and the CNG operators have signed an agreement for supply of gas around the year and it is being violated,” he added.

Ghiyas Paracha said that all other sectors using natural gas have an option to run their operations by using furnace oil or electricity, but the government’s axe falls on the CNG sector only.

“Load management means reduction in supply and that the CNG operators will not allow complete closure in the name of management which is total exploitation.”

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