ISLAMABAD - Law and Justice Division has turned down summary pertaining to power price hike while Ministry of Water and Power despite strong opposition of Finance Ministry is all set to further jack up per unit electric power price in the country.

Sources privy to the development informed that a special meeting was held under the chair Secretary Water and Power Imtiaz Qazi regarding further power price hike in the country. They told that Law and Justice Division of Ministry of Law, Justice and Parliamentary Affairs has so far declined to vet notification of schedule I tariff, which was earlier sent by the Power Ministry. While refusing to grant its nod on 6th May notification of power price increase due to the placement of the court stay order, Law Division has said that legal permission cannot be granted in this regard. However, if water and power ministry provides proves regarding vacation of stay order and the matter is not subjudice in any court then permission can be granted over the notification of schedule one. They were of the view that without issuing the notification of schedule I, power prices cannot be made more expansive under the schedule II for the inflation-hit poor masses already bearing skyrocketing prices of per unit along with unscheduled long hours load shedding.

On the other hand, Finance Ministry while raising its objections over the 12 per cent power tariff hike in the country has said that in accordance with the decision of National Electric Power Regulatory Authority (NEPRA) collection from the consumers had been completed for current financial year under the head fuel adjustment. Further, water and power Ministry should provide details of fuel adjustment so far put on the pockets of the power consumers.

It is to be noted here that finance ministry on the other day while showing its serious concerns argued that as power distributing companies (Discos) has already gotten Nepra approval on old reference fuel price under monthly fuel adjustment to collect the required collection from the consumers so in these circumstances why Water and Power Ministry is increasing power price by 12 per cent? Besides this, a wave of concerns has been observed throughout the country even in finance and water and power ministries and particularly among politicians due to Rs 6.03 per unit power price hike under the head fuel adjustment from October 2011 to January 2012 and a detailed response has been demanded in this regard from the Power Ministry.

However, instead of strong objections and concerns raised so far in this regard from the concerned quarters, officials concerned have prepared a new summary seeking 10 per cent power tariff hike instead of 12 per cent increase in per unit power price in the country in accordance with the advice of Secretary Water and Power. This new summary seeking 10 per cent raise in power price in the country will be sent to Law and Justice Division after getting approval of Finance Ministry. Law and Justice Division will be made convinced to increase the power price by 10 per cent, sources have said.