LAHORE, Oct 30: The Punjab government on Tuesday announced up to 30 per cent cut in fares of public transport being operated on CNG on intra-city and intercity routes.
It was decided in a meeting that was presided over by the Provincial Transport Minister Zaeem Qadri and Secretary (Transport) Captain (retired) Muhammad Yousaf.
Talking to media, Mr Qadri said that according to the decision taken after consultation with the local transporters, there would be 30 and 25 per cent decrease in the fares of all city and the intercity routes, respectively.
“We have received a notification from the transport department and called a meeting of the local transporters on Wednesday (today) to implement it,” Mian Mohsin Rashid, Secretary (District Road Transportation Authority) told Dawn. He said his department would ensure implementation of the notification by all means.
Talking to Dawn, Muhammad Shahzad (head of a private city bus company) welcomed the decision, saying he would follow it with letter and spirit on various city routes on which his buses were plying.
On the other hand, a known intercity transport company manager rejected it, saying that the officials led by Zaeem Qadri had involved only those operating non-AC buses on various intercity routes.
“It seems to be an effort to attain political mileage rather than giving relief to the masses,” he said, adding that how the government would enforce the decision at a time when the federal government planned to increase the CNG prices in coming days.
The Lahore High Court on Tuesday sought replies from the federal government and the Oil and Gas Regulatory Authority (Ogra) on a writ petition challenging the recent increase in petroleum and gas prices.
A consumers rights organisation’s representative, Hanif Goraya, filed the petition and stated the increase was a fraud on citizens.
He said the prices of petrol and CNG had been decreasing in the international market but in Pakistan Ogra had increased the prices.
The petitioner stated the increase in prices was unjustifiable as people were already suffering due to price hike.
He said the 16 per cent sales tax levied on CNG was illegal and even violation of rules of Ogra. He requested the court to take notice of the increase in the prices and declare the same illegal.
The court adjourned hearing till Nov 14 and directed the respondents to submit replies.