LAHORE   -    Another writ petition has been filed in the Lahore High Court against the latest increase in the prices of petroleum products despite the fact that the matter is already sub-judice (in the court).

The government increased the price of petrol to Rs117.83 per litre from Rs112.68, reflecting an increase of 5pc. The HSD price went up from Rs126.82 a litre to Rs132.47 a litre. Likewise, the price of LDO witnessed a hike of 10% to Rs97.52 per litre from the Rs88.62 while kerosene oil price saw an increase of Rs5.38 per litre to Rs103.84 per litre.

Against the silent but significant increase in the petroleum products, the petitioned was filed by Advocate Azhar Siddiq. The petitioner cited federal government, Ogra, petroleum ministry and others as respondents.

He mentioned in the petition that the increase in the prices was illegal as the matter was already under hearing in the court.

The petitioner also requested the court to issue restraining order on the implementation of new prices until ruling on the petitions lying pending with the court.

The petitioner took the plea that the government has not taken approval from the cabinet before imposing new prices.

Last Tuesday, the Oil and Gas Regulatory Authority (Ogra) had proposed to the federal government to hike the prices by 10 percent and the ministry passed on full increase in the oil prices to the consumers.

A day earlier, the PTI government silently increased the prices of petroleum products up to 10 percent weeks before Eidul Azha. The government increased petroleum products prices for the month of August 2019.

As per a notification issued by the government, petrol price has been increased by Rs5.15 per litre while the price of High Speed Diesel was also increased by Rs5.65. The prices of kerosene oil and light diesel oil were increased by Rs5.38 and Rs8.90, respectively.

Also in May 2019, the Economic Coordination Committee (ECC)’s had raise the prices of petroleum products by Rs9.35 per liter and the decision was challenged in Lahore High Court a couple of days later of the increase.

The petitioner had termed the price hike the violation of Articles 9, 14 and 15 of the Constitution and also submitted that the ECC’s decision be declared null and void. Even though the government has again increased the petroleum prices though the matter is sub-judice.

The ECC of the federal cabinet had then approved an increase of Rs9.35 per liter in the price of petrol from May 1. It had also approved a hike of Rs4.89 per liter in diesel price, Rs6.40 per liter in light diesel price and Rs7.46 per liter in kerosene rate.

On April 30 this year, the federal cabinet had deferred the price increase proposed by the Ogra in petroleum products and referred the issue to the ECC which later approved the proposal.

Also on April 1, 2019, the government had increased the prices of all the petroleum products up to 6.45pc. In that month, petrol and diesel prices were hike by Rs6 per liter while kerosene and light diesel oil (LDO) were increased by Rs3 per liter.