September 10, 2013
A high-level meeting held on Monday to review small dams’ projects in Balochistan particularly Katchi Canal project under the chairmanship of Ahsan Iqbal, Federal Minister for Planning Development and Reforms. Chief Secretary Balochistan, Chairman Wapda, Additional Secretary W&P, Engineer in Chief Pakistan Army and Provincial Irrigation Secretaries of Punjab and Sindh also participated in the meeting.
The purpose of the meeting was to review the progress of work on Katchi Canal and also to review water development projects of the country, especially of Balochistan. The Minister said that the government assigned a very high priority to development of Balochistan and the main focus was on water development in Balochistan. Minister directed that no lapses can be tolerated in water development projects and that there would be a policy of zero tolerance on wastage of resources.
The minister said that food security is essential for human security and that in an arid country like Pakistan, it is essential to create water reservoirs. Therefore, the government assigns top most priority to construction of Diamer Bhasha Dam. Small dams are being developed in addition to big projects.
Completion of Katchi Canal project will irrigate 7, 13,000 Acres of land. In Phase-I, 1, 02,000 Acers in Dera Bugti will be irrigated. The minister took serious notice of mismanagement and delay of last 8 years in Katchi Canal Project. He said, “Project completion must be expedited and monthly progress review will be held.” Minister said that he himself will monitor the progress of work and no delay will be tolerated at any cost.
The minister said, “Dams serve dual purpose by providing water for irrigation and also electricity. Water is essential for the survival of our nation and hence those projects must be our priority which provides water storage as well as electric generation. There are many of ways of producing electricity, but there is no substitute of water reservoir. Diamer Bhasha Dam will serve as a life line for Pakistan’s food security, so any delay in its construction will be a criminal offence against our future. A bigger than energy-water crisis in next ten years is looming, which will shake the very fabric of agricultural economy if we didn’t build Bhasha Dam immediately.” Courtesy Business Recorder
Published in ZaraiMedia.com