SAPM Tabish Gauhar resigns again, PM accepts

Special Assistant to the Prime Minister (SAPM) on Power and Petroleum Tabish Gauhar on Tuesday announced that he had resigned from the post, almost a year after his appointment.

“After a year of public service, I’ve decided to call it a day to return to my family. It’s been the privilege of a lifetime to serve the country, to the best of my abilities, in an honorary capacity. I shall remain indebted to the PM for giving me this opportunity,” he said on Twitter.

Gauhar added that while challenges in the energy sector were manifold, he had “no doubt that under the able leadership of Hammad Azhar, the Ministry of Energy (MOE) team will continue to stay the course on structural reforms”.

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Following Tabish Gauhar’s resignation, the Cabinet Division issued a notification, saying that Prime Minister Imran Khan had accepted his resignation with effect from September 20.

Earlier on August 31, the media had been tipped off on the chances of the SAPM surrendering charge of the petroleum division and former Hascol Petroleum Chief Executive Officer (CEO), Waheed Ahmed Shaikh, being appointed as his replacement.

On January 7, he had resigned via WhatsApp, stating that one of the reasons for him doing so could be due to his tough position on the government’s negotiations with Independent Power Producers (IPPs) as well as complaining about his limited scope of work at a cabinet meeting during the course of discussions on reforms; however, his resignation had not been accepted.

Media reports had claimed that Gauhar was had also expressed annoyance with interference in his workings and too many cooks in the pot, lamenting that he did not know whom to report — Minister for Planning Asad Umar, then energy minister Omar Ayub, erstwhile SAPM on petroleum Nadeem Babar or the prime minister.

It may be noted that the former K-Electric chairman had assumed the charge as SAPM on Power on October 1, 2020, replacing Nadeem Babar who was asked to quit his portfolio following a decision to conduct the forensic audit of oil marketing companies (OMCs).


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