Analysis, Side Feature, South Asia

The People are Crushed by Electricity Bills for the Profit of the Owners of Banks and Private Power Plants

The Solution is to Make this Sector Public Property, Under State Supervision, as per the Shariah Rulings of Islam.

With the arrival of the August bills, the public’s patience finally ran out. For the past several years, electricity bills have been increasing rapidly, upon dictation by the IMF. From July last year to July this year, electricity bills were hiked by Rs 18 per unit. A further hike of 26 per cent in August bills has left the public reeling. Many people have committed suicide. Public protests are gaining momentum in the markets. Police are being deployed to prevent attacks, on the offices of electricity distribution companies. The real reason for this oppression, on the people, is the looting of their hard earned money, to secure profits of banks and the private power plant owners.

The power generation sector was opened for private investment on the model suggested by the World Bank. It is based on the corrupt capitalist theory of “the private sector alone is the engine of growth” and “it is not the government’s job to run business.” Private power producers took huge loans from banks, and set up power plants with that money. The government contracted power plants producers on a “take-and-pay” basis in dollars. In these agreements, investors in power plants are guaranteed a return on all business costs, including interest payments. Even if they do not generate electricity, they will be paid capacity payments. Thus, the capitalist economic system collects wealth from the entire society through electricity bills, accumulating wealth in the hands of both investors in power plants and the owners of usurious banks.

O Muslims of Pakistan! The root cause of the electricity crisis is the capitalist system’s misconception of ownership, which is being enforced by the Westernized leadership of Pakistan. This system allows electricity, oil, gas and minerals to be privately owned. These resources are a common need of the public, being of mandatory consumption. Whether they are cheap or expensive, people cannot manage without them. Islam prohibits private ownership of electricity, oil, gas and mineral resources. The Messenger of Allah (saw) said,

«الْمُسْلِمُونَ شُرَكَاءُ فِي ثَلَاثٍ فِي الْكَلَإِ وَالْمَاءِ وَالنَّارِ»

“The Muslims are partners in three things: water, grazing lands, and fire.” (Abu Dawood).

Islam divides ownership in the economy into three types, private ownership, public ownership and state ownership. The state supervises the public property assets, such as oil, gas, water, grazing pasture land, electricity and water, for public expenditure. The Khaleefah (Caliph) of the Muslims is not allowed to transfer these publicly owned assets into private ownership, through privatization. Thus, in the Khilafah (Caliphate), a huge source of wealth in the economy is allocated to the people, collectively. Due to its unique approach to ownership, Islam ensures the circulation of wealth in society. Islam prevents wealth from being concentrated in the hands of a few investors. Moreover, as a result of Islam’s economic rulings, electricity, oil and gas becomes available to the people at cheap prices.

O Muslims of Pakistan! The sharp rise in electricity bills also highlights the dangers of Foreign Direct Investment (FDI). No society can develop strongly and independently, on the basis of foreign companies and foreign capital. It is nothing but naive to think so. Pakistan will pay two trillion rupees next year in the name of capacity charges, out of which a huge amount will be paid to Chinese investors, under the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) agreements.

O Muslims of Pakistan! Our rulers’ vision for the development of Pakistan is nothing more than obeying the dictates of the IMF, and selling the country’s assets to foreign investors and companies. It will be the Khilafah alone which will rule over us according to the Revelation of Allah (swt). The Khilafah will bring prosperity and development to the Muslim regions, through the implementation of the economic system of Islam. So, in your protests on the streets, demand the implementation of the system of Islam and the establishment of the Khilafah. Demand your sons in the Pakistan Army provide their Nussrah to Hizb ut Tahrir for the re-establishment of the Khilafah (Caliphate) on the Method of Prophethood.

Media Office of Hizb ut Tahrir in Wilayah Pakistan

Press Release
19 Safar 1445 – Monday, 4th September 2023
No: 08 / 1445