ISLAMABAD/ KARACHI - Pakistan Petroleum Minister Dr Asim Hussain said that some people were politicising the gas shortage issue.

Talking to media in Islamabad on Monday, Asim said that the people were criticising the ministry instead of giving suggestions on ways to tackle the shortages. He said that the output from the gas reserves being exploited presently was reducing very quickly. “Pakistan is rich in gas and oil reserves but steps had not been taken by the past governments to explore new gas fields in the country,” he said.

The minister said that demand of the gas increased in winter season therefore people had to bear some problems. He said that CNG mafia was a group of blackmailers and the people as a whole will have to take stand against them.

Talking in Karachi the same day, Dr Asim said there was no way to overcome gas shortage without increasing LNG and LPG production or importing gas. Giving the available resources, the CNG price will have to be increased in future, he said.

He said CNG stations owners by violating laws are filling CNG in oxygen cylinders. He said that it would be better if public bear one day problem to save their future. He said that CNG mafia wants to destroy the system.

Dr Asim said that Oil and Gas Development Corporation Limited spent $1billion for data processing, $3.1 billion for data processing equipment, and “we have ordered for the purchase of 2 rigs every year”.

He said that ministry was also pondering over to control the residential generators, which consume huge quantity of gas. He said that the situation will improve in next year as we are rapidly working on LPG and LNG to overcome the shortage of gas.