A few days ago, the government suddenly increased the prices of petroleum products. Whereas earlier the price of petrol was around Rs. 75 per liter, now the price has crossed Rs. 100 per liter.
That is, the price of petrol has been suddenly increased by Rs 25 per liter. The sudden sharp rise in the prices of petroleum products is very unfortunate but also unjustified. Petroleum price hikes always happen on the first date. But this government did not wait for four days and immediately increased the oil price, which is an incomprehensible and miserable step. More than sadness, this cruelty has created a state of grief and anguish among the people. There are also voices from many quarters that the government has ignored the autonomous body OGRA and knelt before the petrol mafia.
The government has no justification for this. Yesterday, in a press conference, Nadeem Babar, while giving the government’s position on the increase in the prices of petroleum products, said that the price of oil in the world market had increased so much that he was forced to increase it. Asked why he was in such a hurry that he did not even wait for the 1st date and added from the 26th date, Nadeem Babar said that if he had waited for the 1st date, he would have paid 30 per liter of oil. Have to raise more than Rs.
Therefore, they decided to increase the price five days in advance so that the price per liter could be increased to a minimum, and the government could achieve this increase in thirty-five days instead of thirty. This is also a bizarre logic. Now the question arises as to why the people were shown green gardens by reducing oil prices so much earlier. Here, too, there is a question mark over the government’s performance and planning. When oil prices were reduced, there was a shortage of oil in the market within a few days, and the government failed miserably to ensure oil supply.
This is also another question mark on the government’s writ. Although the government fined oil marketing companies about Rs 6 crore during this period, oil remained scarce. One of the government’s justifications for the recent rise in petroleum products’ prices is that oil prices in other Asian countries are still higher than in Pakistan. According to statistics, oil prices are higher in other neighboring countries of Pakistan.
But any country sets oil prices based on its per capita income. If this formula is applied in Pakistan, however, the increase in the prices of petroleum products is much higher than in other countries. Now the government’s poor planning is also seen here when the price of oil in the world market was getting twenty to thirty dollars per barrel, then why there was no plan to buy fuel.
If the government did not have adequate arrangements for storing excess oil, it could have been planned promptly. It is also a poor plan of the government that you reduce the prices of petroleum products suddenly to get public applause without anticipating the future. Then the situation is not under your control, and as a result, you have to raise prices all at once. What could be more incompetent than the fact that government MLAs Murad Saeed and Ali Mohammad Khan have implicitly stated in their statements that the Cabinet has not been taken into confidence in the recent hike in petroleum prices products?
Experts say the decision to increase the prices of petroleum products has challenged OGRA’s status and sovereignty. OGRA has not sent the proposal to increase the prices of petroleum products. This is also a question mark.
Another thing to note here is that when oil prices rise, its direct effect is seen in the case of increasing rates of other necessities of life. The recent rise in oil prices has sparked public outrage.
The government may offer as many excuses as it wants, but the recent government move has severely damaged the people’s confidence. Another thing to note here is that when the government fails to achieve the tax targets, it has no choice but to increase the prices of petroleum products and electricity. The country is already suffering from many economic problems due to Corona and other internal issues.
Therefore, the easiest way to deal with the country’s current economic problems is to increase the prices of electricity and petroleum products. It is a well-known fact that when fuel prices rise, so do the prices of other necessities of life. It feels like another storm of inflation is coming. Prices of sugar, flour, pulses, and other food items are expected to rise in the next few days. There is a strong possibility that electricity and gas prices will be further increased, further enhancing the problems of poor people who are crushed by inflation.