PAT all set to protest power outages & hike in petroleum products
An emergency meeting of the Central Executive Council of Pakistan Awami Tehreek held under party president, Faiz-ur-Rehman Durrani, decided to launch a campaign for peaceful demonstrations to protest the unending bouts of power failures and increase in the prices of petroleum products in the country. Peaceful demonstrations and rallies would be taken out in Lahore, Islamabad, Rawalpindi, Sialkot, Faisalabad, Multan, Sarghodha, Jehlum, and Karachi to get its strong protest registered. Central leaders of PAT, Sheikh Zahid Fayyaz, Rana Fayyaz, Anwar Akhtar Advocate, G.M. Malik, Dr Tanveer Ahmad Sandhu, Mian Zahid Islam, Jawad Hamid, Sajid Mahmood Bhatti, Shafiq-ur-Rehman, Rana Farooq, Amjad Jutt, Sajid Gondal, Fatima Mashahdi, Sumaria Rafaqat, Zaheer Gujjar and Bilal Mustafvi were also present at the occasion.
Addressing the meeting, PAT Secretary General, Anwar Akhtar Advocate, said that the worst ever unannounced load-shedding had paralyzed the life of people with horrendous consequences for the national economy. The industrial units were get shut down due to power outages that sometimes power breakdown lasted for more than twenty hours a day. The shutdown of the industry meant that more and more people would be rendered jobless. He said that the shortage of electricity had produced a crisis of grave proportions in the country and it warranted revolutionary steps to take care of the problem on a war-footing basis.
He severely criticized the presidential ordinance for raising the prices of petroleum products, saying it would further add to the miseries of people. He lauded the Supreme Court for suspending the imposition of carbon tax but regretted that the government did not wait for the final decision of the court and went in top gear to levy the PLD (Petroleum Development Levy). He asked the government to respect the verdict of the apex court and take immediate steps for reduction in the prices of oil so that stricken masses could get some relief.
Anwar Akhtar Advocate urged the government to formulate both long- and short-term strategy to overcome the energy deficit in the country. He said that the verdict of the Supreme Court had brightened the faces of people of Pakistan but the promulgation of the presidential ordinance has taken back that happiness from them. He declared that Pakistan Awami Tehreek would take out a peaceful rally in Lahore on July 12 from Nasir Bagh to Masjid-e-Shuda as a protest against load-shedding and hike in petroleum prices.