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Intelligence report reveals smart methods used for electricity theft

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  • Companies use clip-on meters to gauge amperage, but not theft.
  • Private electricians, engineers embed chips to steal electricity.
  • Staff of supply companies fail to find hidden chips in meters

LAHORE: A report prepared by an intelligence agency has revealed a  significant lack of both modern equipment and training among the Discos’ staff to combat the rampant issue of power theft effectively, which has plagued the country’s power distribution companies (Discos) and resulted in losses amounting to billions of rupees, The News reported on Monday.

Among the deficiencies highlighted, the report also stated that all electricity supply companies, including Lesco, employ clip-on meters that can gauge amperage, but are incapable of detecting the electronic devices responsible for stealing electricity within the meter itself.

The report indicated the emergence of new software designed for electricity theft, many of which can control the modern chips found within meters through remote control, and it appears that individuals involved with these power supply companies, either directly or indirectly, are complicit in the installation of these chips.

Private electricians and electrical engineers, according to the report, are involved in embedding these chips into meters, which are then attached to a remote control. When there is a risk of inspection by the team of an electricity supply company, the thieves can reactivate meters remotely, effectively evading detection and sanctions.

CCTV cameras are now installed in most factories and industries and outside houses, which track the movement of raiding teams in the area, while many industries are also informed about raids by Discos staff themselves.

According to the report, the staff have no training, so they fail to find the hidden chips in the meters. Several meters installed by Discos are taken down and dummy meters of similar serial numbers are installed in homes and business centers which are monitored every two to four days from the meter reading. They are removed and replaced with original meters so that the meter reader cannot know the original reading.

The meter reader notes the reading on the original meter which is installed just two to four days before the reading, which is much lower than the actual electricity consumption and the bill is thousands of units less. The readings of electricity meters installed in large industries are taken by Exens or SEs.

Various Discos have started installing AMR meters (Automator Reading) in industries that are linked with SIM data which officers can check at any time, but still, there are thousands of connections. There are those with whom AMR meters could not be installed due to which millions of units of electricity are still being stolen through old methods.

The report states that a major cause of line losses is excessive length of 11KV lines, faulty conductors, damaged transformers, excessive length of LT lines and poor materials, and overloading of transformers beyond their capacity.

The report states that power supply companies do not have a large system for repairing transformers, so most transformers are repaired by private workshops where there is no provision for oil dehydration or maintenance. A regular electric sheet is used in the cover.

Non-standard copper winding quality of transformers is also a major cause of losses. According to the report, the number of customers in the subdivisions of many Discos has exceeded 50,000 and 60,000, while there is a severe shortage of staff. Earlier, the procedure was that if there were more than 20,000 users, a new subdivision was created.

According to the report, corruption continues by charging lakhs of rupees from consumers for new connections due to which the staff are living a lavish lifestyle. The children of these officers are studying in the most expensive private schools.

According to the report, huge amounts are also charged for changing the three-phase industrial meters, which is not possible without the cooperation of the staff of the companies. The unions are busy defending their corruption instead of raising their voice for the protection of the staff and legitimate facilities for them, due to which employees are afraid of union officials and their legitimate demands are also being neglected.

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US envoy urges deeper strengthening of relations with Pakistan

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The significance of strengthening relations with Pakistan was highlighted by US Ambassador Donald Blome on Thursday.

Blome visited the Chaukhandi cemetery in Karachi, based on the information. President Donald Blome and other delegates were cordially welcomed by Sindh Minister of Culture and Tourism Syed Zulfiqar Ali Shah on this particular occasion.

Narendra Kumar, Heather Murphy, and Zahra Hajiani were among the delegation members who visited Chaukhandi Graveyard’s historic tombs with the American envoy, Acting Consul General Jimmy Mauldin.

Highlighting the rich historical significance of Chaukhandi graveyard, Minister Zulfiqar Ali Shah shared his ideas with the US ambassador.

Blome highlighted the Chaukhandi tombs for their exquisite craftsmanship and architectural design. He promised to help Pakistani visitors with their visa requirements.

According to the United Nations Educational, Scientific, and Cultural Organisation (Unesco), he promised to promote the nation’s historical sites.

In the meantime, Shah stated, “The Sindh government is taking steps to provide all sorts of facilities to the tourists.”

Pakistan will receive additional assistance from the US to lower methane gas emissions.

The US decided to help Pakistan lower its methane gas emissions earlier this month.

At a USAID Climate Financing event, US Ambassador Blome stated: “We are working very hard to lower methane gas emissions from dairy farming. The Green Climate Fund in Pakistan will be consulted for funding this initiative.”

“As of 2030, there are global efforts to reduce the temperature by 1 degree Celsius. The US-Pakistan Green Alliance is being followed by the collaboration with Pakistan, according to Blome.

“The problems can only be addressed by providing the stakeholders with financial and technical resources,” he continued.

The government’s first aim is to revitalise the cattle industry, according to Federal Secretary Dr. Fakhre Alam. Raising dairy farming’s production capacity will help it overcome its environmental problems.”

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Shehbaz travels to the UAE in order to strengthen trade relations.

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This visit, which is being accompanied by a high-level delegation made up of important ministers such as Foreign Minister and Deputy Prime Minister Ishaq Dar, Defence Minister Khawaja Asif, Commerce Minister Jam Kamal, Information Minister Ataullah Tarar, and advisor Tariq Fatemi, is intended to strengthen bilateral ties and expand cooperation between the two countries.
Prime Minister Sharif will visit President Muhammad Bin Zayed Al Nahyan of the United Arab Emirates in Abu Dhabi. The high-level gathering will cover Pakistani and UAE bilateral relations, with an emphasis on commerce and investment.

Along with exploring strategic alliances and shared interests that can help their respective nations, they are also expected to concentrate on talking about ways to advance collaboration across a range of industries.

Prime Minister Sharif has talks planned with other Emirati leaders, businesspeople, and heads of financial organisations in addition to his diplomatic engagements. In an effort to promote economic cooperation and draw in investment, he is also scheduled to meet with businessmen and investors from Pakistan and the United Arab Emirates.

The Shehbaz intends to encourage UAE companies to extend their operations into the Pakistani market by interacting with influential businesspeople and highlighting investment prospects in Pakistan.

These exchanges will offer a forum for talking about doable ways to strengthen business relations and carry out initiatives that will benefit both parties. Pakistan’s determination to enhance its political and economic ties with the United Arab Emirates is demonstrated by the visit.

After ending his day-long journey to Iran to offer condolences for the terrible death of Iranian President Ebrahim Raisi and his entourage in a helicopter crash on Sunday, Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif has returned to Pakistan.

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Memon accuses temporary government of ‘delaying’ the BRT Red Line project

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On Thursday, Sindh Minister Sharjeel Inam Memon accused the interim administration of “delaying” the Red Line project of the Bus Rapid Transit (BRT).

Memon stated what he thought, saying, “The BRT Red Line project was mission impossible. However, the project has now begun to be worked on.”

“The reason government is formed is to solve the issues that the people face. “The government is working tirelessly to bring relief to the masses,” he declared.

Memon declared, “It’s also being done about the unlawful bus stands. The passengers will have access to shuttle service from us.”

“A large number of transport projects have already begun. “We aim to ensure that every individual receives a chance to work,” he continued.

Pakistan was ‘started to damage’ by the founder of PTI.

Memon reported on Thursday that a campaign to hurt the nation was started by the founder of Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI).

Memon said at a Karachi event: “Israel discusses the human rights violations in Pakistan. Israel, a party to the Palestinian holocaust, is endorsing the PTI’s founder. Israel has provided election funding to the PTI’s founder.”

“The worst election tampering in 2018 produced the PTI founder’s victory. Police officers, the parliament, and the PTV were all attacked,” he claimed.

“The entire country was closed due to a 126-day protest,” Memon claimed.

The PTI founder was made fun of by Memon, who said, “The PTI founder had always embraced the politics of anarchy.”

Memon stated the following when discussing the state of law and order in Sindh: “The Sindh government is serious about the state of law and order in the province. In terms of keeping Sindh peaceful, everyone is in agreement.”

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