Over the weekend, a significant number of Pakistani citizens participated in street demonstrations and engaged in statewide strikes in response to a substantial surge in electricity bills. This development has compelled the interim administration to devise a comprehensive plan of action, given the severe economic turmoil currently afflicting the nation.
The interim administration has apparently made the decision to offer relief to power consumers by providing a subsidy of up to 300 units on their electricity bills in the month of October. This decision comes in response to the growing demand from the public to address the issue of additional charges that have rendered electricity nearly unaffordable.
According to media sources, it has been indicated that clients, whose power bills amount to as much as Rs70,000, are expected to receive a reduction of approximately Rs13,000, representing a nearly 20 percent relief.
The government is currently formulating a strategic plan to appease individuals who are emotionally aroused. The cabinet, under the leadership of Kakar, is engaging in discussions with the International Monetary Fund (IMF) regarding this topic. Additionally, there is a comprehensive deliberation taking place regarding the provision of assistance to power customers. It is worth noting that the IMF previously rejected a proposal for subsidies.
According to reports, the International Monetary Fund (IMF) has purportedly requested additional evidence from Pakistani officials, with the final determination expected to be reached in the forthcoming days.
In the preceding week, the interim Finance Minister, Shamshad Akhtar, engaged in virtual discussions with Esther Perez Ruiz, the Resident Representative for Pakistan at the International Monetary Fund (IMF). During the course of these deliberations, Ruiz requested the interim administration to furnish a written proposal outlining their strategies pertaining to the collection of energy bills and the implementation of measures aimed at providing assistance in this regard.
According to reports, the government has not received any directions from the International Monetary Fund (IMF) about a reduction in electricity prices. Consequently, it is anticipated that electricity bills may be collected in multiple installments.
In the interim, widespread protests and strikes persisted without interruption across the nation, with individuals resorting to the act of burning money as a form of protest. Furthermore, there has been a growing acceptance and support for the concept of civil disobedience.
Citizens additionally obstructed vital transportation routes throughout the nation, thereby urging the government to reassess the taxation policies.