Chief Justice of Pakistan (CJP) Iftikhar Muhammad Chaudhry on Tuesday told the National Electric Power Regulatory Authority (NEPRA) to explain how it determined the formula for power tariff hike following the directive of the government.
The CJP, while hearing proceedings of the case in connection with load shedding, remarked that the court had not asked to raise prices of electricity.
“If the government is unwilling to give subsidy on electricity it may decide to do so, as prima facie the government is only helping the Independent Power Producers (IPPs) through its subsidy,” he said.
“The court should be satisfied over the procedure adopted to raise electricity prices,” the CJP said.
According to media reports, Justice Chaudhry sought answer from NEPRA whether the government played any role in fixing prices of electricity.
He said the apex court would decide whether the power tariff could be fixed on the basis of discretion. “This is an inappropriate manner of doing things,” he added.
Acting NEPRA chairman informed the court that the government issued notification illegally, that was why it was retracted.
The CJP noted that the government followed a discriminatory policy, as price of electricity was equal everywhere, while some consumers paid bills regularly and others were involved in electricity theft.
“The government is supposedly giving subsidy, but not recovering outstanding dues,” he observed.