SHANGLA: People from different walks of life, including traders, civil society members and political activists, staged demonstrations against the excessive electricity bills and massive hike in prices of petroleum products.

Local residents, traders and civil society members staged a protest rally in Chakisar tehsil of Shangla district against the bloated electricity bills.

Traders also observed a shutter down strike.

The rally was called by civil society members and lawyers.

The protesters chanted slogans against the Peshawar Electric Supply Company for sending them inflated bills, and against the federal government for increasing the prices of petroleum products.

Traders extend support to Jamaat strike call today

The rally led by civil society members, Musharaf Shah, Abdul Bar Advocate, Fawad Bukhari and others, turned into a big gathering at the Chakisar Chowk.

Addressing the rally, they said the rulers had no concern for record-breaking inflation, which was forcing people to commit suicides.

Musharaf Shah claimed the rulers had mortgaged the country to the International Monetary Fund.

The protesters demanded of the government to immediately announce decrease in power bills and oil prices.

Meanwhile, Shangla traders’ union president Mohammad Zada also announced a shutter-down strike on Saturday (today) against the inflated power bills.

In Swabi, the Awami National Party local leaders and workers staged a demonstration against the inflated electricity bills in front of the Pesco office. The party workers first gathered in its main office at the district headquarters and then marched to the Karnal Sher Khan Chowk.

On the occasion, Saleem Khan, ANP’s former provincial general secretary, said people of the district had rendered tremendous sacrifices for construction of Tarbela and Ghazi Barotha dams, but they were subjected to excessive power outages and inflated bills.

ANP workers also demonstrated in Chota Lahor, Razaar and Topi tehsils, demanding the consumers should get electricity at subsidised rates.

Meanwhile, the business community of Peshawar announced support to the nationwide shutter down strike announced by Jamaat-i-Islami on Saturday (today) against the expensive electricity.

Speaking at news conference at the Peshawar Press Club on Friday, Markazi Tanzeem-i-Tajiran provincial president Mian Sharafat Ali Mubarak and other office-bearers said traders would extend full cooperation to the strike call given by JI chief Sirajul Haq against the increase in power bills, prices of petroleum products and other commodities.

On the occasion, JI provincial general secretary Abdul Wasay condemned the inflated power bills and hike in fuel prices and said a nationwide shutter down strike would be observed against the government’s ‘irrational’ initiatives to ‘appease’ IMF.

He said the business community of the entire province had announced its support to the JI strike call, which he added was their constitutional and legal right.

Meanwhile, several private schools in Lower Dir district on Friday announced their institutions would remain closed on Saturday (today) due to a call for complete shutter down and wheel-jam strike by Jamaat-i-Islami.

Lower Dir Chambers of Commerce, traders’ unions, bar councils, transporters and civil society organisations have also announced to support the JI strike call.

In a video message, JI district chief Izazul Mulk thanked the business community, lawyers, transporters and shopkeepers for supporting the strike call. He said all markets in the district would remain closed in protest against rising inflation and devaluation of Pakistani currency.

He said the nation had been protesting against the increase in power tariff while the government had raised the prices of petroleum products.

Published in Dawn, September 2nd, 2023

Opinion

Editorial

After the deluge
Updated 16 Jun, 2024

After the deluge

There was a lack of mental fortitude in the loss against India while against US, the team lost all control and displayed a lack of cohesion and synergy.
Fugue state
16 Jun, 2024

Fugue state

WITH its founder in jail these days, it seems nearly impossible to figure out what the PTI actually wants. On one...
Sindh budget
16 Jun, 2024

Sindh budget

SINDH’S Rs3.06tr budget for the upcoming financial year is a combination of populist interventions, attempts to...
Slow start
Updated 15 Jun, 2024

Slow start

Despite high attendance, the NA managed to pass only a single money bill during this period.
Sindh lawlessness
Updated 15 Jun, 2024

Sindh lawlessness

A recently released report describes the law and order situation in Karachi as “worryingly poor”.
Punjab budget
15 Jun, 2024

Punjab budget

PUNJAB’S budget for 2024-25 provides much fodder to those who believe that the increased provincial share from the...