The arrest of Sindh higher education commission chairman Dr Asim Hussain by the paramilitary Rangers and a detailed report prepared by the Rangers and dispatched to the national accountability bureau (NAB) for onward investigations against three major utilities in corporate sector, the Pakistan State Oil – or PSO, Karachi Electric – or KE and Sui Southern Gas Company – or SSGC, based on revelations of his alleged involvement in pecuniary corruption, misuse of powers and sharing the money minted in form of kick-backs has become a hot topic. Rangers have also recommended for the formation of a joint interrogation team – or JIT, for the detailed probe in charges. However, the proposed JIT and NAB have yet to commence their task in coming days. Dr Hussain is still in protective custody of the paramilitary Rangers for 90 days.
In this regard, a section of print media carried excerpts of the Rangers detailed report on Dr Hussain’s revelations and in those reports were highlighted some serious allegations that linked the aforementioned utilities in the loop of corruption.
KE has categorically refuted and denied the false and defamatory allegations that have been referenced in a few publications regarding undue favors taken by the company and/or the provision of illegal gas connections and supply. K-Electric is a publicly listed company and operates in strict compliance with national laws and regulations and adheres to the highest standards of ethics and corporate governance.
The KE spokesperson told this scribe that whatever allegations emerged in the Rangers report were baseless as the SSGC never extended any sort of favour to the KE in terms of gas connection or otherwise.
He said that the gas supply in a specific period from 2010 to 2015, the KE, as it is on record and protected through documents, was rather slashed to 168 mmcfd against an overall approved allocation of 400 mmcfd. This being protected through documents is itself a contradiction to the revelations laid in the said Rangers report as Dr Hussain’s alleged confession.
The KE spokesperson further explained that the SSGC did not open a new gas connection for the KE as the KE is not concerned with the new gas connection but what matters is the volume of the gas supplied to the power utility.
He clarified that the KE does not have any outstanding sum of money payable to the gas utility as the bills are regularly settled and are up to date. Till date, the KE has made a huge payment to the SSGC amounting to Rs.217 billion.
Referring to the allegations, a spokesperson from KE reiterated that the company has no affiliation to any political person or political party. It maintains a zero tolerance policy towards corruption and nepotism.
The spokesperson further added that KE has been making regular payments to SSGC and has paid over Rs.217 billion to SSGC since 2009. Moreover, payments of around Rs.8 billion have been made in excess by KE in terms of arrears. Despite fulfilling its payment obligations, only 168 mmcfd gas was being provided on average to KE between the years of 2010 and 2015, against a quota of 276 mmcfd for its five power plants.