LAHORE – The Lahore Chamber of Commerce & Industry has said that water scarcity in Sindh and other parts of the country is due to our inability to build Kalabagh Dam .
LCCI President Malik Tahir Javaid said that not the Sindh alone but the entire country is facing the issue of water scarcity. Situation in Sindh is severe but it is not due to federation or Punjab. It is because of those elements who are against the Kalabagh Dam . This notion is totally wrong that Kalabagh Dam will turn Sindh into an arid zone. Actually delay in construction of Kalabagh dam is the only reason of water shortage in Sindh. He said that water supply to Sindh was averaged 36.6 million acre feet annually before construction of Mangla and Terbala dams. This supply was enhanced to 40.30 million acre feet after building of these dams. He said that Kalabagh dam will also supply over 4 million acre feet additional water to Sindh.
The LCCI president said that the Lahore Chamber of Commerce & Industry had already feared that water crisis would hit the agriculture sector of Punjab and Sindh as country has no big water reservoirs while water storage capacity in Terbela and Mangla dams has considerably gone down. Therefore, Kalabagh dam is a must for the country.
“It would be better if anti-Kalabagh elements play role for early construction of this mega project instead of fueling the provincial conflict otherwise our future generations would suffer,” Malik Tahir Javaid added.
The LCCI president said that the Kalabagh Dam is inevitable for the progress and prosperity of the country as it will produce power at an average cost of Rs.2/kwh. This cheap power will annually displace costly power worth approximately Rs300 billion with consequential savings of costly oil imports.
He said that there was no threat to Nowshehra city as it is 150 feet above the water level. He said that Kalabagh Dam , was not only beneficial to Punjab alone but it would be more helpful in erasing poverty from Sindh, Balochistan and Khyber Pakhtun Khawa. The dam would irrigate 800,000 acres of land that is located 100-150 feet above the Indus river level in the province. He said this land could only be brought under cultivation if the river level is raised that is only possible if Kalabagh Dam is built. He said the other alternative is to pump the water which is very costly.