KARACHI - PPP Blames Government for Water Shortage in Sindh

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Title: PPP blames govt for water shortage in Sindh

The News International Pakistan

By our correspondent, March 23,2000

KARACHI: The PPP has expressed concern over the acute shortage of irrigation water in Sindh and demanded that the government adopt a more responsible attitude to ensure better distribution and monitoring of supplies of whatever small quantities of water were still available.

The PPP expressed its concern at the meeting of the Karachi Co-ordination Committee held on Wednesday at the Bilawal House under the chairmanship of Syed Qaim Ali Shah. The other members of the committee Raza Rabbani, Nawab Yousuf Talpur, N D Khan and Taj Haider also attended the meeting.

They contended that the authorities were responsible for this gross mismanagement of available water resources. The committee observed that downstream of Sukkur Barrage, the Mehran (Indus) had been turned into a river of sand while the level of water upstream of the Sukkur Barrage was so low that islands of sand had started emerging midstream. This had never happened before. The inflows of water in Tarbela and Mangla reservoirs ended every year around the end of December or the beginning of January.

The PPP said that the availability of water for the next four months was known in advance every year and a proper regulatory plan to distribute the available water was formulated and adhered to in order to ensure minimum supplies to sustain the crops.

The committee said the government, for unknown reasons, or just to publicise its Bhal Safai project, released excess quantities of water from both the reservoirs in the first two months, resulting in flooding of areas where crops had not even been sown.

The resulting shortage threatens to reduce the yield of the wheat crop as well as shortage of water for sowing the next crop. The farmer community, already undergoing a lot of hardships and the over all production of agriculture sector, shall suffer badly. The party observed that the recurring shortage of water every winter gave lie to the claim of high water availability in Indus river system



-- (Dee360Degree@aol.com), March 23, 2000

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