Hero Image

3-year-old booked for electricity theft in Pakistan's Khyber Pakhtunkhwa

NEW DELHI: A 3-year-old toddler was booked for electricity theft in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa (KP) province after an FIR was filed against the minor, as reported by ARY News.

The Peshawar Electric Supply Company (PESCO) and the Water and Power Development Authority (WAPDA) filed the complaint, leading to an FIR against the minor. The child was brought before the Court of the Additional Sessions Judge, where his legal representative asserted that the judge dismissed the case after receiving an affidavit. Officials from WAPDA and PESCO expressed uncertainty regarding the child's involvement in the alleged offense.

This incident follows a significant revelation last month, where power theft within Power Distribution Companies (DISCOs) reportedly caused a loss of PKR 438 billion to the national treasury. Sources indicated that these losses were a considerable portion of the total annual billing of PKR 723 billion.

The power division identified the poorest performing DISCOs, highlighting companies in Hyderabad, Sukkur, Peshawar, Quetta, and Tribal areas for their records. On April 7, the Punjab energy department raised concerns about power distribution companies overcharging government institutions, which it labeled a burden on the provincial exchequer.

The department noted that Lahore Electric Supply Company (LESCO), Faisalabad Electric Supply Company (FESCO), Multan Electric Power Company (MEPCO), Gujranwala Electric Power Company (GEPCO), and Islamabad Electric Supply Company (IESCO) were overcharging government departments.

The department reported that there are over 102,000 electric connections across provincial departments, with a significant discrepancy between actual consumption and billed amounts. For the financial year 2022-23, the provincial departments consumed electricity worth over PKR 1.91 billion but were billed PKR 76 billion.

In response to this issue, the federal government approved the deployment of Federal Investigation Officers (FIA) to electricity distribution companies (DISCOs) to curb power theft and enhance revenue recovery. This measure was in line with demands from the International Monetary Fund (IMF), as reported by ARY News.

(With agency inputs)