It is encouraging to note that the Energy Division has decided to take stringent action against those who are using gas commercially with having the approval of household connection. As reported by this daily on Thursday, currently, household consumers are paying Tk 925 for single-burner and Tk 975 for double-burner per month.
Besides, metered household consumers are paying Tk 12.60 per cubic metre. On the other hand, the price of gas per cubic metre for commercial consumers is Tk 23 in case of hotels and restaurants and Tk 17.04 for small and cottage industries. Hence, using gas commercially with approval of household connections can be considered a crime as it is accountable for the loss of a huge amount of revenue.
On the other hand, despite repeated instructions of the Energy Division, the Titas Gas Transmission & Distribution Company Limited (TGTDCL) has failed to disconnect illegal gas connections, with at least 102 kms of illegal lines still remaining. We have come to know that TGTDCL, the largest gas supplier in the country is accountable for most of the illegal gas connections in the country.
Using gas commercially with approval of household
connections can be considered a crime as it is
accountable for the loss of a huge amount of revenue
Allegations are there that a section of officials and employees of Titas has become multi-millionaire providing illegal gas connections during the last five years. The government does not get any bills against these illegal gas lines. Thus a service system has expanded which is not only illegal but also accountable for the loss of a huge amount of revenue. Titas Gas authorities cannot deny their liabilities for this disorder.
There is no denying that Titas officials do conduct drives to sever the illegal gas lines, but the problem is that there are unscrupulous people within the gas company who are involved in providing illegal gas connections.
Taking all into consideration, the government should devise necessary measures to identity those corrupt officials involved in providing illegal gas lines and take stringent action against them. Also, drives must be conducted regularly to disconnect the illegal gas lines. Strong political commitment is needed to disconnect all the illegal gas lines in the country.