Rs10m fine sought for illegal oil storage
ISLAMABAD: The Oil and Gas Regulatory Authority (Ogra) has proposed a rigorous imprisonment of up to 10 years or a fine of Rs10 million on the oil marketing companies or private parties which commit the unauthorised storage and handling of petroleum for the purpose of sale, resale, transport or distribution to any consumer.
The Pakistan Penal Code (Amendment) Act 2023, moved by Ogra, has already been vetted by the Ministry of Law and sent to the Cabinet Division for approval.
The addition of Sections 285-A, 285-B and 285-C to the Pakistan Penal Code 1860 has been proposed.
With the passage of time, Ogra argued, the unauthorised storage and handling of petroleum, explosive substances and equipment, causing injury or death to human life and damage to property, has become a terrible act against the whole society, especially the innocent people.
Article 9 of the 1973 Constitution states “no person shall be deprived of life or liberty save in accordance with law.” Similarly, Article 24 of the constitution states “no person shall be deprived of his property save in accordance with law.” The punishment in Sections 285, 286 and 287 of the Pakistan Penal Code related to explosive substances, fire or combustible matter, etc and machinery, causing injury or death to human life and damage to property, is nominal.
Furthermore, these provisions do not deal with the illegal sale, distribution, manufacturing, storage and handling of petroleum products. This situation is putting the human life and property in danger. In order to safeguard human life and property from the unauthorised handling of petroleum and explosives and the unauthorised manufacturing of machinery and equipment, the insertion of Section-A 285-B and 285-C has been proposed.