Top Sindh official transferred for stand on tariff issue
KARACHI, Jan 25 Sindh Secretary for Mines and Mineral Development Abdul Hamid Akhund was transferred on Friday and made a consultant to the provincial government.
The transfer came apparently because of the firm stand he has taken on the issue of tariff for coal-fired power generation projects. Sindh boasts of 194 billion tons of lignite coal reserves in Thar, Sonda, Badin and other places and offers a viable source of uninterrupted energy supply.
But sources close to the Sindh government accuse certain bureaucrats in Islamabad working to safeguard the interests of the oil lobby. About a few years ago, a well-known Chinese company was forced to withdraw from a coal-fired project after the federal government refused to accept its tariff proposal. The company is said to have invested a substantial amount in the project.
The National Energy and Power Regulatory Authority (Nepra) recently decided to fix 7.8 cents indicative tariff on coal-fired projects, which was not acceptable to Sindh.
Mr Akhund was pushing for review of the decision when his transfer orders came.