Cabinet approves 2 weekly holidays to save electricity

Islamabad: The federal cabinet has approved two days holiday a week from October 15 for those industries completely dependent on electricity and gas. But the government clubbed its implementation with the approval of provinces through the forum of the Council for Common Interests (CCI).

The cabinet meeting chaired by Prime Minister Gilani was briefed by the standing committee chaired by Finance Minister Abdul Hafeez Sheikh on the strategy required to deal with the energy crisis.

The proposal for this move will be forwarded to Council of Common Interest (CCI) for a final approval. The CCI’s approval is necessary to take the Punjab on board, as a large number of industrialists who will be affected by the two-day weekend belong to the province.

The cabinet has also ordered shutting markets after the sunset and the marriage halls by 10pm.

Cabinet decided that all government departments and offices will have two weekly holidays. The banks however have been exempted, and can open their branches as per their requirements.

The measure has been taken to save electricity for crucial needs. However the banks will be allowed to open certain branches according to their needs.

The cabinet decided that the connections will be cut for all electricity defaulters without any discrimination or favour. All private and public departments, companies and firms have been given a 45-day deadline to clear their outstanding bills.

PM Gilani particularly ordered all the ministries and departments to clear their electricity dues forthwith. All markets will shut with the sunset while marriage halls will not operate beyond 10pm.

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