It seems that PML-N leader and Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif, just cannot seem to catch a break. A Sindh government minister recently termed him a ‘traitor’, for defying his constitutional duties. PPP energy minister Murad Ali used these harsh words as he felt that the PM should have called quarterly meeting of the Council of Common Interests (CCI). Since 2013, there should have been 9 meeting, yet only 4 have been called to date. The lack of this council’s presence in resolving the disputes of power sharing between the federal government and provincial, is only part of the problem that the Sindh government seems to have with the PM. They want answers and accountability regarding all the moves he has made – and they want them now.

Adding to the above, the Sindh minister claimed that despite huge potential for producing electricity from wind and solar plants, the federal government has imposed a ban on starting its new projects. For him, what was infuriating is how on one hand, they had banned new solar and wind projects, while on the other they are rewarding a company named Zonergy and taking its case in Nepra. He blamed the federal government and its secretaries for corruption in the Quaid-e-Azam solar power project and Nandipur power plant, where a loss of Rs 20 billion to the national exchequer was bared, because the PM did not approve the ONM of Nandipur plant despite its completion. Why is the government in talks with India and Kyrgyzstan for importing electricity from wind energy, but unwilling to add the Sindh energy into national grid?

Though the term “traitor” is unnecessarily harsh, the energy problem has been a thorn in the side of the state for a long time. The government just can’t seem to get ahead of the problem, and it often seems like they are not even trying. Nawaz Sharif’s superfluous projects like the Metro Bus have resulted in a lack of investment in the energy crisis. The PPP government had put all responsibility, on the centre for the deepened power crisis that had left almost 1,500 people dying in the heat wave. They held the Muslim League-Nawaz’s government responsible for long hours of power outages, which continue to contribute to the heat-stricken city’s miseries.

It’s not only the federal government to be blamed for this mess; rather the Sindh government should share the blame. Threatening to halt gas supply to Punjab from Sindh, if their rights were not protected is not the way to go. However, the PM should really roll up his sleeves and give the Sindh ministers some answers, before they actually keep their word.