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KMC, KE embroiled in a power struggle over unpaid bills

June 29, 2019
KMC, KE embroiled in a power struggle over unpaid bills

Photo: Online

The Karachi Metropolitan Corporation carried out on Saturday an anti-encroachment operation near a K-Electric’s office a day after the power utility disconnected the power supply of the city government’s building during a budget session.

The constructions on the footpaths and the gate of the KE’s Eleander Complex near Shaheen Complex were demolished during the drive. A sub-station and “illegal” rooms set up by the KE on a footpath near Makki Mosque in Garden and on Shahra-e-Quaideen near Noorani Kabab House have been demolished too.

A KMC representative said that the drive was carried out on the directives of the Supreme Court and it will continue without any break.

Related: Power supply to KMC building disconnected over unpaid bills

He said that the KE has encroached upon the land of the city government by setting up sub-stations at different locations.

The management of the power utility was not pleased with the action of the KMC. They said that there weren’t even served any notice before the drive.

Unpaid electricity bills are the main source of contention between the two organisations.

A KE representative said that KMC has outstanding power bills amounting to Rs4billion and several notices have been sent to it for depositing the said amount.

“The Supreme Court during its hearing on April 19 ordered the KMC authorities to clear the dues of KE,” the representative said. “The corporation has, however, yet to pay up.”

Related: Sindh govt ordered to pay KMC’s Rs580m unpaid electricity bills

Mayor Wasim Akhtar, while talking to SAMAA Digital, said that the power utility is misstating the facts.

The finance department of the city government has cleared some dues and now they have to pay an amount of Rs2.5billion for its 274connections. He said that these dues have been running since 2010.

“During the court hearing, I clearly said that the city government cannot pay the dues because of its financial constraints,” Akhtar said. The court then ordered the Sindh government to pay on our behalf, he added.

Local Bodies Minister Saeed Ghani and Secretay Khalid Haider Shah couldn’t be reached for comment on the matter. The story will be updated as soon as they respond.

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