The chamber court yesterday stayed a High Court order that had stayed for six months the second phase of the gas price hike scheduled to become effective from June 1.
There is no legal bar for the government to execute its decision to hike gas prices from June 1 in the second phase following the chamber judge’s order, concerned lawyers said.
In response to a government plea, Chamber Judge of the Appellate Division Justice Syed Mahmud Hossain stayed till June 5 the HC order that stayed the decision of increasing the gas price from June 1.
The chamber judge also sent the petition to the full bench of the Appellate Division for its hearing on June 5.
Mizanur Rahman, one of the member of the Bangladesh Energy Regulatory Commission (BERC) told The Independent that the commission would increase the gas price as per its earlier decision as the legal barrier has already removed following the apex court order.
The new gas price hike will be effective from June 1, he added.
Bangladesh Energy Regulatory Commission (BERC) had on February 23 raised gas prices for all consumers by 22.7 per cent and decided to implement the hike in two phases.
As per the government’s declaration, prices of kitchen gas have been increased to Tk. 750 from 600 for a single burner and Tk. 800 from 650 for double burners from March 1.
The BERC also announced that gas prices would be increased again to Tk. 900 for single burners and Tk. 950 for double burners from June 1. The prices were supposed to be further increased by Tk 150 each from June 1.
But, in response to a writ petition, the HC bench comprising Justice Moyeenul Islam Chowdhury and Justice JBM Hassan stayed for six months the second phase of the gas price hike that was scheduled to become effective from June 1.
The HC bench also issued a rule asking the government to explain why the public notification for increasing the gas price from March 1 and June 1 should not be declared illegal.
Architect Mubassher Hossain, convener of the national complaint handling committee of the Consumers Association of Bangladesh (CAB), filed the petition with the HC on February 27 challenging the legality of the government mass notification for the gas price hike.