Consumers to get no respite soon

Sadiqur Rahman | Updated at 02:32am on July 07, 2018

Domestic consumers in the capital could expect to get relief from gas supply shortage when imported Liquefied Natural Gas supply begins in January, Titas Gas Transmission and Distribution Company officials told New Age.
Acute gas supply shortage affected the capital’s domestic consumers during daytime over the last couple of months due to supply shortfall from the sources, they admitted.
They said that Titas gets 1,600 to 1,700 million cubic feet of natural gas from Petrobangla per day against the daily demand of around 2,000 million cubic feet.
In January , Titas got nine million meter cubic feet of natural gas for the capital , said Rana Akbar Haydari, general manager of Titas’ Dhaka metro (North) marketing division.
But the Consumers Association of Bangladesh said that the gas supply shortage had been artificially created to promote the business of liquefied petroleum gas cylinders.
CAB also said that unscrupulous Titas staff brought extra pressure on gas supply by extending gas supply connections to many apartment buildings flouting a government ban in place since 2010.
Complaints about low gas pressure have been mounting from domestic consumers particularly in the northern part of the capital.
Domestic consumers at Adabar, Shyamoli, Mohammadpur, Mirpur, Pallabi and Dhanmandi were affected by gas supply shortage, said Armanur Reza Bhuiyan, Titas’ deputy general manager (emergency).
Zamila Akhter Helen, a housewife of Adabar area, told New Age, ‘I can’t cook food for my family members during most of the day time as we get little gas supply from 6AM to 3PM.’
She said, ‘It’s a common problem for our neighbours as we share the inconvenience of getting gas supply for four hours every day from 3PM to 7 PM.
‘Imagine the situation for my two daughters, one a university student and the other one a dental college student,’ said Helen, adding, ‘I can cook for them only in the evenings.’
Mohammad Yunus Ali chef at Eden Multi-Care Hospital at Dhanmandi said he cannot cook food even for the post-surgery patients due to acute gas supply shortage, though he was supposed to cook three meals for at least 60 patients every day.
According to Titas’ annual report for 2017 the company provided 1,198,412 new domestic connections from 2011 to 2017, though a government ban on extending new connection had been in place since 2010.
According to the report, 7,11,523 new domestic gas connections were provided from June 2016 to June 2017.
CAB general secretary
Humayun Kabir Bhuiyan said that illegal connections brought extra pressure on the supply chain resulting in legal consumers getting no gas supply during most of the daytime.
Consumers’ rights were getting flouted, said CAB energy advisor M Shamsul Alam said as they pay for 88 units of gas per month but get barely 10 to 15 units.
He said that the government created an artificial crisis of gas to promote the LPG business of 12 companies.
Total Gas’s Dhaka North sales representative MH Hasanuzzaman said that demand of LPG cylinders increased sharply in the recent months.
Titas managing director Mir Mashiur Rahman did not receive phone calls nor he was available for giving interview to New Age despite efforts made over the last three days.