KARACHI - Karachi Electric Supply Company (KESC) has paid Rs1.34 billion to Sui Southern Gas Company (SSGC), out of the total amount of Rs4 billion of the monthly bill charged for the month of August. The outstanding dues of Rs13.65 billion has yet to be paid by the KESC to SSGC, the source disclosed to The Nation. The KESC has the monthly gas bill of around Rs3 to Rs4 billion that is separate from the sum accumulated as liabilities, which is Rs13.65 billion. During the month of August, the KESC has made payments twice, one on August 15 and the other on August 26. Nothing has been paid for the month of September, it was decided between the two utilities that the KESC will pay Rs550 million from the arrears along with the current bill. But the payments made in August are apt to explain the situation, said the source. He added that the company understands that the KESC is facing financial crisis but at the same time it should be kept in mind that SSGC is also a utility, and if payments are not made on time, SSGC will also face financial problem. The claim that the gas pressure is low is incorrect. SSGC has agreed to supply 256 MMCFD of gas to the KESC, but on Friday when the three units of Bin Qasim Power Plant and Korangi Thermal Power Plant went off, SSGC was supplying 270 MMCFD of natural gas. After those units were closed for maintenance, KESC is now receiving 235 MMCFD of gas for power generation. The SSGC is facilitating KESC as much as possible but the utility should also realize the situation, he further added. It is pertinent to mention here that the KESC has shifted most of its power generation on natural gas, as it is a cheaper mean of electricity generation. On the other hand, the production on Furnace Oil (FO) is now being expansive for the financially weak utility, as the price of FO is highest in the market these days. The KESC has purchased only 5000 tons of FO during the first 6 days of this month. Moreover, the city is in grip of worse load-shedding during the month of Ramazan. The metropolitan is facing 8 to 10 hours outages while the power cuts continue even at the time of Sehar and Iftar. Despite the fact that the officials from the company claim that KESC is carrying out 1 hour of load shed after every 4 hours. This is in the backdrop of shutting down of two units of Bin Qasim Power Plant and one unit of Korangi Thermal Power Plant due to maintenance problems. Korangi, Landhi, Malir, Gulistan-e-Johar, Gulshan-e-Iqbal, New Karachi, Sadder, PECHS, DHA, Clifton and almost all the areas of the city faced prolong power outages. Most of the citizens have spent sleepless nights during the month of Ramazan, the citizens of the metropolitan has urged the government to provide relief to the public during the month of Ramazan. Meanwhile, the officials of the KESC did not respond to any queries regarding the electricity situation in the city.