LAHORE - The Lahore Chamber of Commerce and Industry Tuesday rejected the Sui Northern Gas Pipelines (SNGPL) plan to suspend supply of gas to industrial units for consecutive twelve days in the month of July and urged the authorities to shelve the plan for the sake of economy that is already facing multiple challenges. In a statement issued here, the LCCI President Zafar Iqbal Chaudhry, Senior Vice President Ijaz A Mumtaz and Vice President Faisal Iqbal Sheikh said that they were unable to understand the SNGPL logic behind targeting the industrialists in Punjab time and again under one pretext or the other. They said that the industry in Punjab was already in dire straits due to one-day gas holiday imposed on it by the SNGPL while there was no concept of holiday for the industrial consumers of Sui Southern Gas Pipelines. The LCCI office-bearers said that at a time when the Lahore Chamber of Commerce and Industry was making requests to the SNGPL for an end to one day gas holiday to industrial consumers, the authorities over there have further complicated the situation by coming up with the proposal of 12 consecutive day gas suspension which in no way is acceptable to the industrialists. They said that the Lahore Chamber of Commerce and industry was planning to convene a joint meeting of all the chambers in Punjab as they also have serious reservations about the SNGPL. The LCCI office-bearers also said that if the SNGPL was really facing gas shortage it should avoid giving new gas connections and facilitate the existing ones. They said that the business community was expecting that due to change of weather and decrease in domestic use of gas, the supply of gas to the industrial sector would improve but unfortunately there was no improvement in the supply of gas adding to the miseries of the business community. The LCCI office-bearers said that a number of industrial units would be left with no other option but to close down their operations if the gas supply situation remained the same for a few more days. They said that the gas load shedding was being done in the month of November because of higher demand at the domestic front but now when the domestic consumption had already decreased considerably there was hardly any justification with the SNGPL authorities for the loadshedding of gas. They said that it seemed that some elements in the Gas department were hatching conspiracies against the government to defame it that was otherwise doing a lot for the economic revival of the country. He said that they were unable to understand that why the business community was not taken into confidence over industry-related issues and if the SNGPL was facing some gas shortage related issues they must talk to Sui Southern Gas Pipelines that has surplus gas or at least SNGPL should take the real stakeholders into confidence. They said that the entire Industrial sector was already passing through very critical times due to acute shortage of electricity and bad of law and order situation and all the departments that are providing inputs to the industrial sector must take ground realities into consideration. The LCCI office-bearers urged the Prime Minister Yousaf Raza Gilani to look into the matter and issue necessary directions to the concerned authorities.