Answers Not Accusations.


The gas shortage that has put both households in businesses in distress does not have an end in sight, judging by the lack of solutions presented by the state. Instead of looking to solve a steadily worsening situation, the centre and the provincial government in Sindh are now trading barbs over the issue. Where the fault lies is inconsequential for the average consumer of gas, what matters is how the elected representatives plan to fix this. Scoring petty political points will not make heroes out of anyone, regardless of their place in the federal or provincial government.

The shortfall that has hit the country over the past few weeks needs cooperation between different levels of government, instead of the traditional hostility and finger-pointing. The federal government is claiming that the Sindh government's refusal to lay a new proposed pipeline is the issue. But this does not even begin to answer why the problem extends beyond Sindh and the Sui Southern Gas Company Limited (SSGCL) on to other provinces as well.

Nor does the federal government's misguided claim answer for why Sindh itself is experiencing a shortage as well. Given that each province has the first right to consume gas extracted from within, if the province does indeed have access to more gas, how is the shortage affecting Sindh just as adversely as the other provinces?

The federal government cannot consistently deflect any and all...

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