Sindh Chief Minister Syed Murad Ali Shah said on Thursday that power distribution companies collected electricity duty on behalf of the Sindh government from consumers, but they did not transfer the amount to the provincial government.The chief minister said this while presiding over a meeting held to discuss the payment of electricity bills to power distribution companies and collection of electricity duty from them. The meeting was attended by Energy Minister Imtiaz Shaikh, Advisor to CM Murtaza Wahab, Chief Secretary Mumtaz Shah, Principal Secretary to CM Sajid Jamal Abro, Finance Secretary Najam Shah, Energy Secretary Musadiq Khan and other officers.CM Murad Ali Shah directed the Energy Department to evolve a mechanism to directly deposit electricity duty in the provincial government’s account. “Electricity distribution companies such as KE, HESCO and SEPCO are collecting electricity duty from domestic and commercial consumers at the rate of 1.5 percent and 2 percent of the electricity bills on behalf of the Sindh government. However, the amount is not returned to the provincial government. According to a rough estimate, around Rs 3 billion electricity duty is being collected by the KE annually. HESCO and SEPCO also collect huge amounts, but they do not deposit this amount in the Sindh government’s account,” he said.The chief minister directed the Energy minister to constitute a committee under the Energy secretary to reconcile the figures of electricity duty with distribution companies and direct them to deposit the amount in Sindh government’s account. He also directed the minister to meet the State Bank governor for ensuring that electricity duty paid through electricity bills was deposited directly to the provincial government’s account. Regarding the payment of outstanding electricity bills, the chief minister was informed that electricity dues worth Rs 580 million had to be paid by the provincial government. He directed the Energy minister to get the bill reconciled first and then pay it in installments.Murad Ali Shah said that all the electricity bills of K-Electric pertaining to all departments, KWSB, autonomous and semi-autonomous organizations, DMCS, local bodies and all other officers should be reconciled by the Energy Department and then paid.