THE sudden disruption of gas supplies to over 130 textile-exporting units in the central and northern parts of Punjab by Sui Northern Gas Pipelines without any prior notice have irked the mill owners, who had been ensured an uninterrupted gas supply by the government. The decision comes at a time when the textile industry, the mainstay of our exports, is facing a financial crunch and the country's trade deficit has risen to over $16 billion during the current fiscal year. The extra cost of electricity to be borne by textile mills during gas loadshedding would adversely affect their viability. They are already finding it hard to compete with other countries due to expensive inputs. All Pakistan Textile Mills Association's Punjab Zone President Akbar Sheikh got it right when he said the government kept exhorting the industry to adopt a market economy, but had failed on the supply side. The damage caused to the gas-based electric generators and the expensive textile machinery, due to the sudden disruption of supply, needs to be compensated. The SNGPL management must explain why it failed to intimate APTMA about the diversion of industrial gas supply to domestic consumers. Some heads must roll. The crisis gripping the leading sector of our economy, that not only earns a major chunk of foreign exchange but also is a prime source of providing employment both for the skilled and unskilled labour force, cannot be allowed to worsen. Those in authority need to take appropriate measures to check such instances if it plays its role right.