KARACHI -  The Jamaat-e-Islami (JI) has rejected the K-Electric tariff set by the National Electric Power Regulatory Authority (Nepra) and announced that it will launch a protest drive against K-Electric and Nepra policies.

JI Karachi chief Hafiz Naeem-ur-Rehman announced on Friday that his party would hold demonstrations at 50 places across the metropolis on Saturday and announce a sit-in against this increase in power tariff. He announced this at a press conference at the JI headquarters, Idara Noor-e-Haq, here on Friday.

Speaking on the occasion, he said that on the basis of solid reasons the party believed that power tariff should be decreased. He said that Nepra had betrayed some 25 million residents of Karachi. He also alleged that Nepra concealed the facts about power tariff.

The JI leader said that on the one hand Nepra was giving the impression that tariff had been cut, but on the other it had increased the tariff by Rs1.90 per unit for those using 201 to 300 units and 90 paisa per unit for those using one to 100 units of electricity.

Highlighting “anomalies” in the tariff, he said that Nepra had barred K-Electric from charging consumers for double band and receiving meter rent because the company had already received the cost of the meters from the consumers, no decision had been taken on the money that K-Electric had already received illegally from consumers in the name of bank charges and meter rent.

Rejecting the tariff, he said that his party would opt for review over the decision. He alleged that practically Nepra had always favoured K-Electric. He said that contrary to earlier practice, the tariff was imposed for seven years, creating a room for increase in charges before time.

He said that in the latest tariff, K-Electric’s target on T&D losses had been increased from 15 percent to 20 percent and this step had translated into a burden of five billion rupees on Karachiites.

The JI leader said that Nepra showed criminal negligence and leniency when it came to implementing the decisions, which did not favour K-Electric. He said that over 50 cases against K-Electric had been pending in the Sindh High Court. The entity was enjoying stay orders in all these cases.

The situation has deteriorated to the extent that 18,000 applications were filed to the federal ombudsman against K-Electric in last year alone. He also alleged that political parties were hand in gloves when it comes to atrocities of K-Electric against people of Karachi. Citing the role of political parties in Karachi at the time of privatisation of now defunct KESC, he said that K-Electric had proved that it could buy even political parties, but the JI was not for sale.

He said that K-Electric management should be charged with the murder of around 5,000 people who lost their lives during heat wave in Karachi. He said that scheduled and unscheduled power loadshedding by K-Electric resulted in an acute water shortage in Karachi.

The JI leader said the prime minister had reportedly announced formation of a committee to revise the tariff in the favour of K-Electric, but this was unacceptable. If the ruling party in the Centre interferes and adds to the miseries of Karachiites, it will have to face people’s wrath.