Qaim to take up gas closure issue with PMJune 10, 2015
KARACHI: Sindh Chief Minister Syed Qaim Ali Shah has said that he has spoken to federal finance minister Ishaq Dar for provision of smooth and regular gas supply to all the seven industrial areas of the province. “I will also take up this issue with Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif tomorrow (Friday).”
This he said while presiding over a meeting of SITE Association of Industry at the CM House today. The meeting was attended by leading industrialists, Qasim Siraj Teli, Zubair Motiwala, Principal Secretary to CM Alamuddin Bullo, Commissioner Karachi Shoaib Siddiqi, Secretary Industries Shazia, Secretary Local Government Imran Attta Soomro, DG Excise & Taxation Shoaib Siddiqui, senior officers of Finance department.
The association members, Qasim Siraj Teli, Zubair Motiwala, Jawed Bilwani and other said that they had some issues such as property tax issues, supply of gas to all the seven industrial areas, issues with K-electric, water shortage, cleansing, frequent fire incidents and traffic bottleneck at Orangi Nulla.
Zubair Motiwala proposed that collection rights of the property tax from the SITE area be given to SITE Limited so that the same could be used for development of infrastructure. Responding to the proposal the chief minister said “under the law only the Excise & Taxation department was competent to collect property tax. However, we are exploring the ways and means to hand over the collected amount to SITE Limited for development of the infrastructure of SITE area,” he said and directed Secretary Industries Ms Shazia to float a summary for the purpose.
Zubair Motiwala said that the federal government had started operating Jamshoro and Kotri power plants by providing them 113 MMCF and 40 MMCF gas respectively from the share of Sindh but the electricity generated from both the plants were being taken by the Punjab.
Motiwala said that the Punjab’s contribution in national production of gas was only five percent against which it was consuming 45%. “Interestingly, Sindh was producing 73 percent of gas but it was being given only 29 percent. “This is an injustice with us, therefore it must be done away with,” he urged.
The chief minister told them that he had talked to Isahaq Dar and he assured that the grievances of Sindh would be solved as soon as the federal petroleum minister would return from abroad. “However, Dar assured me that there would be no gas closure in Sindh,” the chief minister said and added, “I would not stop here but would take up this issue with Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif who is coming on Friday (Tomorrow) and I am sure he would solve it. Otherwise, other avenues are open,” he said.
Talking about their (SITE ASSOCIATION) issues with K-Electric, the chief minister assured them that after budget he would sit with them once again and get their problems solved with K-Electric.
Responding to the issue of water shortage in the SITE Limited area, the chief minister directed commissioner Karachi Shoaib Siddiqi to implement the decision he had taken in his previous meeting. “I had asked you to manage five to seven MGD water for SITE and why it has not been implemented so far,” he asked and directed him to hold a meeting with KWSB and get it implemented.
Responding to the cleaning issue, chief minister Syed Qaim Ali Shah directed Commissioner Karachi to coordinate with KMC and get their storm water drains/Nullas cleaned. “This is a genuine problem. Sewerage water overflows on roads when Nullas are choked. This problem damages the roads also,” he observed.
The chief minister talking about fire incidents urged the association to ensure proper fire extinguishing arrangements in their industrial units. “I am also taking necessary measures to procure latest and necessary fire extinguishing facilities. This is very important in term of life and property,” he said.
“I am also well aware that there was a bottleneck at Orangi Nulla where traffic jams are routine matter. I am exploring the way which most probably would be widening of Afza Flyover,” he said and added that necessary action would be taken shortly.
The association requested the chief minister to shift CPLC to a neutral place. “The IG office would not be suitable for such an institution,” they said. The chief minister assigned the task to Commissioner Karachi with the directives to discuss the matter with trader community and take decision in consultation with him.
The SITE Association of Industry thanked the chief minister for his support and cooperation.