Parliamentary Standing Committee recommends pre-paid gas meters to reduce waste
A Parliamentary Standing Committee meeting today recommended immediately ensuring pre-paid meters for all gas consumers to reduce gas waste in the country.
The meeting was held at the Jatiya Sangsad Bhaban.
Sources told The Daily Star, the recommendation came after the discussion started regarding the four-hour closure of CNG filling stations across the country.
The new rule, enforced yesterday, halted CNG filling station operations during peak hours of electricity supply -- 6 pm to 10 pm -- every day to ensure an uninterrupted power supply.
After the Standing Committee meeting, committee chairperson Waseqa Ayesha Khan told the Daily Star that the government has no alternatives but gas rationing.
'But it is not the ultimate solution. To reduce gas-waste, we have to install pre-paid meters for all gas consumers,' she said.
She said the reason behind delaying installation of pre-paid meters is fund crisis, adding that the committee "recommend starting the process with gas distributor companies' funds."
"The government introduced lots of initiatives to reduce the waste. The number of illegal gas lines has decreased," she added. However, when asked if the committee has any data on gas waste, the chairperson said they don't have any.
There are about 43 lakh residential gas consumers in the country. The installation of pre-paid meters started in 2011. Until December last year, pre-paid meters were installed for 2,73,100 consumers under several projects funded by own and foreign funding, according to previous meeting minutes of the standing committee.