FOR quite some time, the Sui Southern Gas Company has resorted to an unreasonable mode of assessing gas charges.
Previously, it used to charge on the basis of adding up slabs of consumption, e.g.. for the first 100 units there used to be one rate, say Rs4 per unit.
If the consumption exceeded 100 units, then the first 100 units used to be calculated at the rate of Rs4, working out to Rs400.
After that the additional units up to 200 would be charged at the rate of the second slab and added to the first.
Thus, if my monthly consumption came to say 101 units, then the total would be Rs400 plus the cost of additional one unit at the rate of the second slab.
If this was Rs.8, then the total would be Rs408, plus taxes/other charges.
However, what the company has started doing now is to charge all the 101 units at the rate of Rs8, thus bringing the total to Rs808 (plus taxes etc.) in the example cited above, instead of Rs408.
This is gross unfairness to the consumer.
The utility company/OGRA or whoever is responsible should abandon this method of calculation and be fair to hapless consumers when the cost of natural gas and everything else is rising to frightening levels, especially for retired persons like me.
More scary is the report in Dawn of March 8: “At its farewell meeting on Thursday, the Cabinet increased natural gas tariff by about Rs5.50 per unit”.
It is hoped that the government would have mercy on the people and reverse this decision.
ABDUL RASHID Karachi