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FPCCI rejects increase in electricity, petroleum prices

FPCCI rejects increase in electricity, petroleum prices

LAHORE: The Federation of Pakistan Chambers of Commerce and Industry (FPCCI) on Tuesday rejected sharp increase in prices of electricity and petroleum products terming it a cruel decision which will break the back of masses already reeling under inflation.

Government has taken electricity out of the reach of the common man under pressure from IMF which cannot be accepted as it will push country into an intense political turmoil, said Zubair Ahmed Malik, President FPCCI.

In a statement issued, he said that business community will never allow the government to make life of citizens miserable to please international lenders.

Life of the dispossessed is being made difficult to raise Rs 175 billion annually but the government would not consider containing energy theft worth Rs 250, Rs 500 billion corruption in FBR, unjust tax exemptions to aristocracy worth billions of rupees or imposing tax on the massive income of elite, he said.

Adopting any of those measures would have culled the crisis but policymakers are bent upon sacrificing voiceless masses which is unfortunate, he observed.

The FPCCI chief said that IMF or government are not concerned about development of the country, otherwise they would have shifted some burden on landed nobility which have so far failed to discharge national obligation by paying any tax.

Those who claimed to transform Pakistan into a welfare state and an Asian tiger have disappointed masses as well as the business community through their pathetic performance; we will not allow them to shift entire blame and burden on the masses.

He noted that the benefit of foreign or local loans have never benefited masses or country but the privileged class.

FPCCI will not play the role of silent spectator in the current situation, he said, adding that the government should realise their mistake to reverse the decision before it has to pay a heavy price for it, warned Zubair.