Leading industrialists on Friday protested against the Karachi Electric Supply Company (KESC) in the wake of 12-hour loadshedding in the city’s industrial areas.
In the evening, the industrialists associated with the SITE Association of Industry, one of the biggest industrial zones of Karachi, staged a protest and blocked Makro-Habib roundabout for hours, a busy road adjacent to the SITE industrial area.
Talking to The Express Tribune, SITE Association of Industry Chairman Muhammad Irfan Moton said the industrialists were not satisfied with the performance of KESC and the government, which prompted them to come on to the streets. “We want the government to resolve whatever the problem is with KESC because we need electricity to run our industries.”
Karachi Chamber of Commerce and Industry (KCCI) President Mian Abrar Ahmed said over phone the industrial areas were still enduring severe loadshedding.
KESC was receiving low gas pressure due to which it could not produce required power, he said, adding the government was planning to provide subsidised furnace oil for the power utility to help it produce enough power to end outages in industrial areas.
He pointed out that the industrialists have also agreed on closing all their manufacturing units on Sunday and work for six days a week in the wake of gas load management.
Ahmed said KCCI representatives had met with Federal Petroleum Minister Dr Asim Hussain to resolve the issue and expected that the situation would get clear in next meeting to be held in coming days.
Despite repeated attempts, KESC spokesperson was not available for comments.
Meeting with petroleum minister
In a press release issued on Friday, the KCCI revealed that the businessmen had met and apprised the petroleum minister about production losses following 12-hour power outages in industrial areas due to low gas pressure.
In the light of decision taken in the meeting, the industry would stay closed on two Sundays in December provided that the required gas pressure was ensured for the remaining six days in a week, said former KCCI president Siraj Kassam Teli.
Published in The Express Tribune, December 17th, 2011.
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