- Petroleum Division responds to the inquiry report on Pakistan’s petrol crisis
- Report had recommended action against the petroleum secretary, oil DG, and oil marketing companies
- Commission is “controversial”, says petroleum division.
ISLAMABAD: The Petroleum Division reportedly says that the inquiry commission tasked with investigating Pakistan’s petrol crisis is “controversial”.
Sources said that the Petroleum Division has prepared a response to the report of the inquiry commission which was released earlier this month.
What did the inquiry commission’s report say?
The inquiry commission had raised serious questions over the performance of the special assistant to the prime minister and the petroleum secretary.
It had recommended strict penal action against those involved in illegalities and suggested the dissolution of the Oil and Gas Regulatory Authority (OGRA) through an act of parliament within the next six months.
Departmental action against the secretary of the Ministry of Energy, Petroleum Division was also recommended.
What does the Petroleum Division want?
The Petroleum Division is not ready to accept the inquiry commission’s report.
It says the commission is controversial because its chairperson and members “do not have the expertise or experience to understand the oil supply chain”. They said the commission’s report, therefore, is not valid.
Sources said that the Petroleum Division had nominated former Oil Director-General Rashid Farooq and Petroleum Institute of Pakistan’s CEO Asim Murtaza as members of the inquiry commission, but they had both declined from joining.
It was said that the commission’s report cannot be correct because no petroleum experts were part of the investigation.
The commission hired former OGRA director Muhammad Yaseen, who has never worked in the oil sector.
The National Accountability Bureau (NAB) has filed assets beyond known source of income case against one of the members of the commission, Gohar Nafees, according to the petroleum division’s reply.
“How can he be included in the commission?” the Petroleum Division questioned.
They said the import of petroleum products was banned on March 25.
Oil marketing companies had stocks of imported oil that were not pumping oil from refineries, which led to the closure of refineries, the government division said.
The Petroleum Division’s response is likely to be submitted today to a committee headed by Federal Minister for Planning Asad Umar.
PM’s promise to solve petrol woes
Earlier this month, Prime Minister Imran Khan vowed strict action against those involved in Pakistan’s petrol crisis after a report on the matter was submitted to the Cabinet.
Sources had said that PM Khan had also formed a three-member committee — comprising Planning and Development Minister Asad Umar, Human Rights Minister Shireen Mazari, and Education Minister Shafqat Mehmood — to review the recommendations of the petrol crisis report.