Proposed hike in water charges opposed.

PESHAWAR -- The businessmen here on Tuesday rejected the proposed increase in water charges and urged authorities not to approve the proposal without 'rationalising' tariff for commercial consumers in the provincial capital.

During a meeting here, representatives of trader bodies insisted that the water rates advertised in the media were unaffordable for the people.

They said the local government department issued a public notice about a hearing about water charges.

Sarhad Chamber of Commerce and Industry (SCCI) president Mohammad Ishaq chaired the meeting, where senior vice-president of the chamber Shahid Hussain and vice-president Ejaz Khan Afridi, representatives of traders and industrialists were in attendance.

Mr Ishaq said the proposed water charges advertised for various sectors and businesses were irrational, so they should be rationalised.

'Extremely unrealistic water charges have been proposed for five-marla houses, while wedding halls, restaurants, public lavatories, filling stations and educational institutions have also been included in the list of businesses to be subjected to those excessive charges,' he said.

The SCCI leader said the proposed monthly water charges were Rs700 for shops, offices and flats, Rs800 per room for a hotel, from Rs10,000-Rs40,000 for wedding halls, Rs440 per room for student hostels, Rs5,000-Rs15,000 for restaurants, and Rs70,000 for...

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