Approximately 71 years after independence have been passed but unfortunately, we are still unable to utilize the God gifted sources. Although Pakistan is a rich country in all means (minerals, fertile land, mountains, high peaks, beautiful valleys, rivers, and sea) we are away from basic needs such as water and electricity. Pakistan is rich in coal reserves that can meet the requirement of energy for more than 100 of years.
The basic issue which we are facing nowadays is the water crisis. Yes, we have world largest canal system. Pakistan is a land of warm water. Yes, we have four seasons. Yes, we have a huge volume of water by monsoon rain. Yes, we have world 3rd largest glacier. Yes, we have water annually 145 million acre-feet. But we are preserving only 14 million acre-feet and 131 million acre-feet wasting due to the lake of dams and reservoirs. We are that nation who wasted water Rs 25 billion every year.
This is the question mark… who is responsible for the water disaster? Foreign lobbies are involved, or our decision makers are responsible? Who will and when take the responsibility for the water catastrophe?
India our neighbor country settled its water & political issues by the constitution and constructing the 40 dams on Jhelum and Chenab out of which 4 are large and 16 small are operational. Now India building the world third largest biggest dam (Kargil) on Indus River. I am in regret because we had built just two dams in 70 years. We are unable to construct dams as compared to India. Besides we are highly dependent on the agriculture sector which depended on the water sector and we are not serious about the water shortage. We are neglecting the construction of dams. We are busy in paralyzing our single most important source of income, employment and which is a base of export agriculture which caters above than 170 million people giving livelihood to 66 percent of total population employing to 43.4 percent of workforce facing a historic economic calamity. Indeed, the agriculture sector has a share in GDP is 20.9 percent but our no seriousness curtailing this ratio and reducing the industrial productivity.
Due to climate change, Pakistan will be stuck with historical floods in the coming years. We need a mechanism to control or transferred the threat of flood and the suitable solution to tackle with threat is in the construction of dams either large or small in the whole country. We also need to regenerate the capacity of water storage in Mangla and Tarbela dams.
The major reservoir project waiting from 1985 to till date for our attention and seriousness, a project of KalaBagh is very necessary for monsoon zone but it is under the political maneuvering. The problem will be solved when the decision makers and fate makers of Pakistan forget their personal grievances and political ego and interest and think about the nation & Pakistan. A nation cannot survive if we forget building roof before the rain. If we forget producing resources before consumption. We cannot create power if we lose our tack of development. We cannot grow up if we forget substituting our sources with the passage of time because nations are dependent on their sources.
Dams are almost basic building blocks for Pakistan’s power. Let’s strengthen Pakistan.
The Writer is a member of Senate from Balochistan.
Disclaimer: Views expressed in this article are those of the author and Balochistan Voices not necessarily agrees with them.
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