Circular debt surpasses Rs300 bln as number of defaulters surges



WAPDA has failed to recover outstanding dues amounting to Rs 233 billion from the defaulters so far despite tall claims by the Ministry of Water and Power.

The key defaulters of electricity bills hail from the elite class of the society.

Majority of the defaulters belong to Lahore while a small number belongs to Multan.

High-ups of the Ministry of Water and Power told a local news agency that WAPDA has met failure in effecting recovery from defaulters for want of proper legislation in the country.

WAPDA said that stern action would be initiated against the electricity pilferers and defaulters after effective legislation is enacted.

Documents show that the total number of electricity consumers in the country is 500,057. Authorities have issued Equipment Removal Orders (ERO’s) against power connection in respect of defaulters but this step has also proved fruitless.

Documents said that non recovery of heavy amounts from the defaulters has led to increase in circular debt. A massive amount of Rs 233 billion has to be recovered from the consumers who were declared defaulters during the financial year 2014-15 while the unpaid amount to be recovered from old defaulters stands at Rs 92 billion.

The defaulters on payment of bills include industrialists, traders, politicians, offices and government and semi government corporations.

Outstanding dues amounting to Rs 66.72 million have to be recovered from electricity bill defaulters from Faisalabad division, Rs 6,275 million from GEPCO defaulters, Rs 23 billion from HESCO defaulters, Rs 178 million from IESCO defaulters, Rs 178 million from LESCO defaulters, Rs 46 billion from LESCO defaulters, Rs 18 million from MEPCO defaulters, Rs 13 billion from PEPCO defaulters, Rs 35 billion from KEPCO defaulter, Rs 72 billion from SEPCO defaulters and Rs 38 billion from TESCO defaulters.

The agency quoting Ministry of Water and Power sources said that circular debt could be overcome if the massive amount on account of outstanding arrears is recovered from defaulters.

The Ministry of Water and Power documents reflected that power theft related incidents and number of defaulters have decreased in KP while power pilferage and number of defaulters have increased manifold in the Lahore and Sukkar divisions since the PML-N government came to power.