Winter woes: No fuel to fire the hearth

Residents and businesses affected by natural gas shortage.


Express December 15, 2011

ISLAMABAD:


Acute shortage of natural gas supply has brought routine activities to a standstill in the federal capital.


Both businesses and home users are being affected by gas outages and low gas pressure.

“Survival without gas is tough in winters,” said Razia Hussain, mother of three and resident of sector G-9/4. “I feel helpless for being unable to provide food to my kids on time or keep them warm at night,” she said.

Zaheer a resident of the same sector said, “It has become an ordeal to get three timely meals a day at home. Getting food from hotels is something I cannot afford,” he said.

Liquefied petroleum gas (LPG), the only other viable alternative, is something that eats up a large chunk of his income and is also not sustainable in the long run.

Shaheen, a teacher, blamed the government for making their lives “miserable”.

Fazalul Haq, a resident of G-7, said the geyser turns off due to low gas pressure.

“I had never thought that taking a warm bath would become a luxury like this,” he said, adding that they had been facing low gas pressure for the one and half months. “I can’t even shave in the morning.”

Tandoor businesses affected

Nanbai Association General Secretary Sardar Altaf told The Express Tribune that low gas pressure has “severely” affected their businesses.

“We have to use coal or wood to run tandoors, but it has become exorbitant as coal costs Rs50 per kg and wood costs Rs 600 per mound,” he said, emphasising that they are left with little to no margins. “How are we supposed to keep our businesses running?”

Published in The Express Tribune, December 15th, 2011.

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