Senate passes PPC, CCP bill unanimously

ISLAMABAD: Senate on Friday unanimously passed a bill to amend the Pakistan Penal Code (PPC), 1860 and the Code of Criminal Procedure CCP, 1898 the criminal law (Amendment) bill, 2015.

The bill was tabled by the Minister for Petroleum and Natural Resources Shahid Khaqan Abbasi.

According to the statement of objects and reason, the Ministry of Water and Power is faced with the situation whereby the recoveries affected by the distribution companies (DISCOs) from the consumers are insufficient and inadequate to meet the cost of generated electricity.

As a result, the GoP has to provide subsidy, especially to those DISCOs where leakages, pilferage and theft is rampant.

Primarily, this phenomenon emanates from fragile legal and enforcement structure.

In the FY 2012-13 the total number of occurrences registered in relation to theft of electricity were around 2 million, against which 23000 FIRs were lodged and only three convictions were reported.

Presently offenses, penalties and procedure in relation to the theft of electricity are provided in the Electricity act, 1910. However this mechanism is weak and has not resulted in any significant recoveries or deterrence.

Moreover, against the total 7800 distribution feeders in the national grid (except KESC) as many as 4000 feeders have a loss of more than the standard figures (0-10%) which is a large percentage when seen in the context of the total 22 million consumer base, a situation has arisen where about 15 billion units of electricity have been lost during FY 21012-13 out of which at least 25-40 % is considered to be lost due to outright theft translating into loss of upto Rs90 million.

There is thus on urgent need to rectify the present situation that the Ministry of water and Power finds itself in.

According a draft bill further amends Pakistan Penal Code 1860 (PPC) and the Code of criminal procedure 1898 (CrPC) has been drafted. The draft bill was also vetted by law and justice division.