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Pak Def Minister suggests operating markets in the day amid acute power crisis

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Islamabad, June 5 (Ajit Weekly News) Pakistan’s Defence Minister Khawaja Asif has suggested taking advantage of “365 days of sunshine” and operating markets in the daytime as opposed to the convention of “opening markets at 1pm and closing them at 1 a.m.”, as policymakers seek solutions to conserve energy amid an acute crisis.

“Our markets open at 1 p.m. and close at 1 a.m. This (practice) is found nowhere in the world,” Asif tweeted late Saturday night.

“God has given our country 365 days of sunshine and yet we turn on the lights in the dark to do business.”

If markets set the right business hours then, with Karachi excluded, 3,500MW of electricity can be saved, Dawn news quoted the Minister as saying.

“Tough circumstances call for tough decisions,” he added.

His suggestion came after Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif held a marathon five-hour meeting earlier on Saturday to come up with an “emergency plan” aimed at reducing power cuts that have roiled the country amid reported shortfalls of 7000 MW, Dawn news reported.

In the meeting, the premier dire­cted relevant authorities to come up with a plan to curtail loadshedding within 24 hours.

The meeting was called to discuss the issue of loadshedding in the country and problems being faced by citizens in general and the business community in particular. Federal ministers and high level officials were in attendance.

The meeting took place amid reports about hours-long loadshedding in various parts of the country, leaving the people to suffer in high temperatures.

Due to the difference in supply and demand, unannounced loadshedding of eight hours is being carried out in different parts of the country, reports The Express Tribune.

Moreover, in areas with line losses found to be high, the duration of loadshedding has reached 12 hours.

Furthermore, the country has been facing an extreme heatwave since last month and temperatures up to 50 degrees Celsius has been recorded in some parts of Pakistan.

–Ajit Weekly News

san/ksk/

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