MUZAFFARGARH - Hundreds of vans, mini-buses and buses, including city bus service would be clamped down as the Oil and Gas Regulatory Authority (OGRA) ordered the CNG stations not to supply fuel to vehicles whose gas cylinders are fitted on the roofs or under the seats.

According to the OGRA authorities, the decision was made for public safety after several incidents in which passengers have been burnt to death due to wrongly fitted CNG cylinders in public transport vehicles.

The restriction will not be applicable on commercial vehicles whose gas cylinders are placed under the carriage. But All Pakistan CNG Association (APCNGA) said CNG cylinders fitted under the vehicle were more dangerous than cylinders fitted on the roof. A spokesman for the APCNGA, Rana Shiraz Bashir said some 50,000 buses, mini-buses and vans would be affected by this ‘irrational’ decision. OGRA should not disregard international standards which allow CNG cylinders to be placed on the tops of vehicles, he added.

The inter-city bus service will be severely affected owing to OGRA decision. Notices of not selling gas to commercial vehicles in which CNG cylinders are fitted on rooftops or under the seats have been issued to all the CNG stations, said FBS General Manager Maqsoodul Haq.

Ibrahim Khan Bus Company and Khan Bus Service managements said that the company would move the Supreme Court against the government’s “irrational decision”. Ibrahim Khan said that urban transport had never been a lucrative business and the CNG buses should not be treated as commercial vehicles. This decision will discourage foreigners from investing in the transport sector as the other countries are promoting environment-friendly transport, unlike here, he added.