Opp censures PM over hike in petroleum prices


–PML-N’s Shehbaz Sharif says hike in POL prices is ‘economic terrorism’

–PPP’s Sherry Rehman says petroleum prices have decreased by 3pc globally


ISLAMABAD: The Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) and Pakistan People’s Party (PPP) on Saturday criticised Prime Minister Imran Khan’s government for continuously increasing the prices of petroleum products.

Petroleum prices in the country hit the highest-ever mark on Friday after the government announced a four per cent increase in oil prices for the month of June.

The adjustment was made even though the international crude market price is at $67 per barrel, which is almost half of the 2008 highest record of $147 when retail prices stood below Rs80 per litre.

Crude price had dropped by 7pc in the Arabian Gulf Market — the source of Pakistani imports — over the last month from $72 on April 28 to $67 per barrel on May 29, but the currency devaluation caused the major negative impact.

In a statement, PML-N President and Opposition Leader in National Assembly Shehbaz Sharif termed the hike in petroleum prices a form of ‘economic terrorism’.

“Naya Pakistan has started facing financial disaster,” he said, adding that his party would announce a protest against rising inflation.

Meanwhile, PML-N Vice President Maryam Nawaz said that the “incompetent PM” has made lives of the people miserable. “Imran Khan used to say that petrol price is high due to corruption,” she added.

Separately, party spokesperson Marriyum Aurangzeb said jacking up prices of petroleum products ahead of Eidul Fitr was akin to enmity with the public.

“Since the incumbent government took reins of the country, [they] are getting bad news every day,” she said. Aurangzeb said the hike in the prices of petrol, gas and electricity would take a heavy toll on the people.

The next budget, which she said, would be according to the wishes of the International Monetary Fund (IMF) is yet to come.


PPP Vice President Sherry Rehman, in a statement, condemned the rise in rates and said: “The failed government has given nothing [to the country] except inflation and unemployment in the past nine months. The revolutionary administration has increased oil prices by Rs20 within nine months.”

She pointed out that petroleum prices have decreased by 3pc globally yet the government had announced an increase. Noting that the rise comes days before the budget, she asked if the step was taken on the directions of the International Monetary Fund.

On the other hand, PPP leader and Sindh Local Government Minister Saeed Ghani rejected the surge in petroleum prices, saying that ‘Imrani Tsunami’ has become a hassle for the masses.

The increase in the prices of US dollar and medicines are also creating difficulties for people to survive, he added.

It is to be mentioned here that the petrol price has been increased by Rs4.26 per litre, High Speed Diesel by Rs4.50, kerosene oil and light diesel by Rs1.69 and Rs1.68, respectively.

In its initial summary, the Oil and Gas Regulatory Authority (OGRA) had proposed an increase in the price of petrol by Rs9 to reach Rs116.95 per litre.