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Residents forced to switch to LPG, firewood

Residents forced to switch to LPG, firewood
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ISLAMABAD: Residents of the twin cities continue to face severe problems owing to low gas pressure, which has badly affected their daily routine life. 
Talking to APP on Thursday, they said that they were unable to cook anything at home. 
They said that they had to stand in long queues outside restaurants and ‘tandoors’ during breakfast and dinner timings.
Zubair Khan, a worker at a tandoor in Sector F6/1, said that due to low gas pressure tandoor owners were using liquefied petroleum gas (LPG) or firewood to operate their tandoors. 
Customers at the same tandoor told APP that the traders of LPG had increased the price of the gas significantly, and at present, LPG was available at the rate of Rs 160 per kilogramme, which was Rs 65 higher than the production cost of the gas.
Mehwish Ali, a resident of Sector G7/3, told this agency that low gas pressure had multiplied the miseries of domestic consumers in most parts of the city, compelling them to use electric heaters and stoves to do their chores.
“Our daily routine has been affected due to low pressure of gas, especially at early morning hours and in the evening, when the pressure is reduced to minimum and it becomes too difficult for the people to cook food,” she said. 
Musarrat Bibi, another resident, said that the schoolchildren were also disturbed, as they had to skip their breakfast, which could not be cooked owing to very low pressure of gas. 
Sofia Begum, a housewife, said that it was really annoying when everyone was in a hurry to start their daily activities in the morning but could not even get breakfast on time due to low gas pressure.
Kashif Ali, a resident of Dhoke Hassu, said that they had been facing severe problem of low gas pressure for the last two weeks. “We have registered complaints with the relevant department several times but to no avail,” he added.
When contacted, a senior official of the Sui Northern Gas Pipelines Limited (SNGPL) said that gas pressure usually reduces in the winter season due to considerable gap between the demand and supply. 
“Hundreds of complaints have been registered in the last few days and the company is trying to resolve the issue to ensure gas supply to consumers,” he added.
The total domestic consumption of gas in the twin cities stands at 100 million cubic feet per day (mmcfd) in the summer season, while it surges to 280mmcfd during the winters.
The SNGPL required 400mmcfd for domestic consumers and the CNG sector in the region, while it is reportedly getting only 220mmcfd gas.
Another SNGPL spokesman said that a team had been constituted to visit the affected areas, and added that the consumers should avoid unnecessary use of gas appliances.
He said the issue was temporary and gas pressure would improve with the rise in temperature.
He said that with the intensity of clod, the gap between supply and demand had widened, creating this problem.
He was of the view that since Islamabad and Rawalpindi were lying at the tail of the system, residents were facing the problem of low gas pressure.
The residents of the twin cities are now compelled to use LPG or firewood to cook food in wake of the worst gas crisis in the history of the country.
Meanwhile, the LPG distributors’ association has called upon the government to take action against retailers overcharging consumers.
“The Oil and Gas Regulatory Authority (OGRA) needs to take action against decanters charging more than Rs 125 for per kilogramme of gas, and filling domestic cylinder for Rs 1,475,” the association’s chairman, Irfan Khokhar, said while talking to APP on Thursday. 

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