Following the launch of a crackdown against government departments and facilities that have been defaulting on their utility bills, Sui Southern Gas Company (SSGC) has suspended gas supply to four healthcare facilities, as well as other government departments, in Karachi.
The healthcare facilities to which the supply has been suspended include Abbasi Shaheed Hospital, Sindh Government Hospital, North Nazimabad, the trauma centre at Dr Ruth Pfau Civil Hospital and Surgeons Services Hospital.
According to the SSGC spokesperson, the administration of Abbasi Shaheed Hospital has not cleared arrears amounting to more than Rs200 million, accrued over a period of several years. He said that the supply to the hospital was suspended earlier too, in February 2017, following which the healthcare facility and Karachi Metropolitan Corporation had given an undertaking, committing to paying an additional Rs1 million along with the monthly gas bills to clear the arrears. Gas supply to the hospital was restored after the undertaking, he added. The spokesperson said that Abbasi Shaheed Hospital’s administration has not cleared the dues, despite giving a written assurance.
The gas supply company sent several notices to the healthcare facility over the past several months, warning to suspend its gas supply, he said, adding that SSGC officials and Abbasi Shaheed Hospital’s administration had also held meetings to resolve the issue. However, the hospital’s administration failed to give a satisfactory response over the non-payment of dues.
Among other defaulters, Sindh Government Hospital North Nazimabad owes SSGC Rs4 million, Surgeons Services Hospital owes the gas company Rs2.15 million and Dr Ruth Pfau Civil Hospital has to clear arrears amounting to more than Rs2 million.