Leghari seeks KP Govt’s cooperation in anti-power theft campaign

PESCO

ISLAMABAD, Apr 19 (APP): Minister for Power Sardar Awais Ahmad Khan Leghari on Friday sought cooperation from the Khyber Pakhtukhwa Government (KP) in the anti-power theft in the jurisdiction of Peshawar Electric Supply Company (PESCO) and Tribal Electric Supply Company (TESCO).

The minister, in a letter to KP Chief Minister Ali Amin, also sought time for a meeting so that the power pilferage, losses and recovery etc issues could be discussed holistically for a joint strategy to improve the situation.

“As you are aware PESCO and TESCO operate in province of KP. These two organizations are among the low performing DISCOs which are contributing to ever increasing circular debt,” he said.

The minister said that during the current financial year, combined loss of Rs 188 billion, which includes under recovery and loss above NEPRA’s threshold, was anticipated in PESCO and TESCO.

“Critical high losses areas identified in PESCO include D.I. Khan, Bannu, Karak, Kohat, Shangla and ex-FR Regions,” he said in the letter.

The minister said the TESCO operated in former tribal areas, where there was serious problem of non-recovery and non-meterization, and due to those factors, the Company might make loss of Rs 51 billion in the current financial year.

He said to curb the issue of rampant theft, reduce losses and improve recovery, the Federal Government had launched a nation-wide anti-theft campaign.

The success of the campaign, he said, “depends on whole- hearted support of provincial government and its authorities which is not currently available in KP”.

The minister sought special interest of the KP CM to ensure that support of police was available to PESCO so that the anti-theft campaign was successfully implemented in the province and the menace of power theft was rooted out.

“There is a challenge of weak writ of the government in the operational jurisdiction of TESCO. Two possible resolutions: either, the KP government prepares a comprehensive plan to support TESCO in recovery and meterization drive; or the provincial government takes over supply of power in TESCO region,” he further wrote.

The minister said the prime minister had recently constituted a committee under the chairmanship of Defence Minister for consultative interaction with the KP Government and other stake-holders.

The committee would start deliberations with the provincial government very soon and intended to visit the KP province for finalizing a sustainable plan of action.

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