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PPP Slams Hike In PoL Prices, Demands To Withdraw Decision

Karachi(July 01, 2018): Pakistan Peoples Party (PPP) on Sunday has rejected the hike in petroleum products’ prices.

In a statement, former opposition leader in National Assembly Khurshid Shah has demanded the caretaker government to withdraw its decision.

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He also urged to provide maximum relief to the nation.

Earlier, the caretaker government approved Saturday night a significant upward revision in the petroleum prices, citing an official announcement, with the new rates being effective by July 1.

As per the notification, the new per-liter prices of petrol, diesel, kerosene oil, light diesel, and high-speed diesel are Rs99.50, Rs119.31, Rs87.70, Rs80.91, and Rs105.31, respectively.

This effectively implies a respective price hike of Rs7.54, Rs14.00, Rs3.36, Rs.5.92, and Rs6.55 in petrol, diesel, kerosene oil, light diesel, and high-speed diesel.

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Earlier, the Oil and Gas Regulatory Authority (OGRA) had recommended an increase in the prices of petrol, diesel, and kerosene oil by Rs5.40, Rs6.20, and Rs12, respectively, for July 2018.

It forwarded a summary proposing the aforementioned revision to the Petroleum Division of the Ministry of Energy, sources had said.Prior to the latest development, the caretaker leadership on June 11 had bumped up the prices by Rs4.26, Rs6.55, and Rs4.46 per liter, respectively, for petrol, diesel, and kerosene oil for the June 12-30 period.

Petroleum Prices: CJP Irked Over ‘Blame Game’

Chief Justice of Pakistan (CJP) Justice Saqib Nisar was annoyed at what he called the persistent “blame game” between institutions in taking accountability for surging petroleum prices.

The chief justice was hearing a case relating to petroleum prices and the imposition of additional taxes at the Supreme Court Karachi Registry.

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Managing Director of Pakistan State Oil (PSO), who appeared before the court, told the bench that 22 companies, including PSO, were buyers of petroleum products. Every company put forward demand estimates for the next three months during a joint meeting, he informed the court.Asked about the pricing mechanism, the MD told the court that average prices of petroleum products were determined by global oil prices.

The CJP, however, was not satisfied with the response and told the official that the court would verify the records listed in the report with the help of experts.

The public is fed up of the continuous increases in petroleum prices, the chief justice remarked, adding that the court will not spare anyone if any irregularity was found in the report.Chief Justice Nisar, also expressing his annoyance at the failure of chairman of Oil and Gas Regulatory Authority (OGRA) to appear before the court, questioned who was responsible for making the pricing policies.

MD PSO told the court that the policies are made by OGRA.

OGRA officials in presence, however, contended that the impression that the body was responsible for the policies was wrong.The pricing mechanism for petroleum products is devised by the government, OGRA officials informed the bench.

To this, Chief Justice Nisar remarked that every institution appeared keen to pile blame on the other. He also appeared irked by the differences in commission rates set by dealers.

It looks as if this is all a monopoly by dealers and their institutions, the CJP observed.

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