Gandapur blasts federal govt after protests erupt in KP over rampant power outages

Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Chief Minister Ali Amin Gandapur has slammed the federal government for the rampant electricity load shedding in the province after protests erupted in major cities and towns on the third day of Eidul Azha amid ongoing heatwave.

In a statement, the chief minister came down hard on the ruling PML-N, warning that if the issue of the unbridled power outages persisted he would be forced to take steps to halt electricity supply.

Gandapur also accused the WAPDA [Water And Power Development Authority] of unfair treatment towards Khyber Pakhtunkhwa. He also insisted that no WAPDA assets were damaged.

The chief minister called upon all KP parliamentarians to convene at WAPDA grids to ensure uninterrupted electricity restoration [for their constituencies].

Asserting the province's rights, Gandapur reiterated that “money was collected in our province's name but not returned. No obstacles will deter us from claiming what rightfully belongs to us".

The chief minister issued a final ultimatum to Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif, demanding the immediate release of Rs16 billion owed to the province by the federal government. He threatened to approach the IMF if the funds were not disbursed promptly.

"These people have assumed power through illegitimate means. I understand how they came into office and how to remove them,” Gandapur added.

In another statement earlier in the day, Gandapur alleged that the federal government was exacting revenge from the people of the province.

The CM stated that the province was experiencing the worst power shutdowns, adding that the federal government had not fulfilled its commitment to provide the required electricity to the province.

Gandapur mentioned that local Wapda officials were cooperating with the provincial government to the best of their capacity, but it was the federal government that had further reduced power supply to the province.

“There will be another round of talks with the federation to discuss power load shedding. The provincial government is fully cooperating with Wapda on the issue of line losses,” Gandapur said.

The chief minister urged the federal government to correct its attitude towards Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, warning that otherwise, the people of the province would take to the streets to protest.

He added that the federation's failure to fulfill its commitments was leading to mounting complaints about increasing power outages.

Governor Faisal Karim Kundi also commented on the issue, stating that the federal government was not meeting its commitments regarding power supply to Khyber Pakhtunkhwa.


Protests erupted on the third day of Eidul Azha against rampant electricity loadshedding in major cities and towns of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, with the PTI announcing plans to protest in the National Assembly and on the streets against the discriminatory electricity supply to the province.

Enraged citizens staged demonstrations in Peshawar, Nowshera and Mardan, where the Grand Trunk Road was blocked, triggering severe traffic jams.

Irate protesters raised slogans against unannounced power outages during Eid, causing problems for motorists and pedestrians alike.

Several ambulances were seen stuck in traffic gridlocks.

Former KP chief minister Pervez Khattak's car was also caught in a traffic snarl. Khattak urged protesters to exercise restraint.

Meanwhile, PTI leader Asad Qaiser joined a protest against power load shedding in Swabi. He criticised the federal government and announced plans to protest in the National Assembly and on the streets against the discriminatory electricity supply to Khyber Pakhtunkhwa.

In Karak, women protesters demonstrated against unannounced power cuts, blocking Shagai Road to traffic.

In a related development, MPA Fazal Elahi stormed the the Rehman Baba Grid Station, restoring power to 10 feeders. A video of this unconventional approach to power restoration went viral on social media.

In response, the Peshawar Electric Supply Company (Pesco) decided to take action against MPA Fazal Elahi, his assistant Jameel and 45 others for disrupting the power distribution company's operations.

The SDO for the Rasheed Garhi Subdivision wrote a complaint to the Rehman Baba police station, seeking the registration of an FIR against MPA Fazal Elahi and his companions, citing losses totalling Rs 2.64 million incurred by Pesco due to the incident.


Later in the day, a case was registered at the Rehman Baba police station for forcibly restoring electricity from the grid station.

According to police officials, MPA Fazal Elahi has not been named in the FIR, but his assistant Jameel and others have been included.

On the complaint from Pesco, five sections have been added to the FIR which details that approximately 30,000 units were consumed to restore electricity to different areas, costing approximately Rs 1.32 million.

Further investigation is in progress.

ePaper - Nawaiwaqt