Struggle for the Restoration of Indus River

New Water Paradigm: required seriousness and Support

by: Jamil Junejo-Hyderabad, Sindh

Pakistan Fisherfolk Forum held seminar on topic of “New Water Paradigm and Restoration of Indus River on 29th June on Almanzar,Jamshoro .It is one of the steps of the struggle announced by PFF in a program held in down stream to mark international River day in March 2009 .PFF, unlike the old demand of no new dam on Indus ,made by nationalist political parties , demands new water Paradigm: Decommissioning of existing dams in Pakistan.

Struggles announced and initiated under the new Water Paradigm is timely, plausible and sign of serious effort actually needed to resolve water crises and to evade the possibility of barrenness of entire Sindh. Just to struggle is not guarantee of success. Success depends on relationship between severity of issue and seriousness of struggles to solve it. No doubt, Sindh have been launching water struggle from different fronts and have succeeded in many ways .But it does not mean that we are ultimate successor. For we have been successful in scrapping construction of Kala Bag dam, but have so far failed in scrapping of Greater Thal Canal, failed in abandonment of WAPADA 2025 vision , fatal for Sindh. We have failed to scrap Bhasha and Akhori Dam whom budget has been allocated for. We have failed to in closing illegal 24 hours water flow of Chishma-Jhelum and Tounsa Panjnad Link Canals. Every movement unchecked sea due to unavailability of sweet water which pushes it back, is intruding cultivable land of Thata District. More than 2.0 Million Acres of cultivable land of Thata district has been engulfed by sea.Morevervr, Sindh is going highly short of timely and required water for cultivation of lands.

On the part of Sindh,This is all because of absence of seriousness required to resolve this issue of such high severity.Seriousslessness is from Sindh Government on side, and from political parties and civil society from other side. We don’t complain from Sindh government because we don’t expect, in light of institutional imbabalce, negligible degree of Sovereignty of house, to take concrete and consolidated efforts to resolve this issue .But we can complain from political parties and civil socity.Unquestionaly, Both have played considerable role in struggle of Sindh.But the steps taken don’t suffice to cope up the severity of issues completely.

Pakistan Fisherfolk froum being social movement seems serious than national political parties .It has announced and begun its struggles through rallies, demonstation, press conferences in every city, city level marches followed by long March starting from keti Bandar culminating outside parliament in the shape of sit -in Bag dam ,going via shores of Indus

Water crises of Sindh are national, regional and international level in its nature. Regarding national level One party or side cant solve it, It requires strong networking to muster required strength and momentum .Therefore it is moral responsibility of all responsible pro Sindh circles and sections to support Pakistan fisherfolk –led struggle for restoration of Indus and decommissioning of Dames

Pro people circles and movements of South Asia should come into alliance with PFF –led movement of Sindh because, Plan devised by corporate interests driven consortium of India,Pakistan,Bhutan,and Neplal to convert Himaliyas into powerhouse by setting up 100 units power houses by setting up 150000 megawatts of electricity is grave threat to poor people of South Asia.

International Community and civil society organizations should support this movement by all kind of support

PFF-led movement should build up strong net working and effective lobbying at national and international level. It should fight peacefully from all fronts: Diplomatic, legal, social and political inorder to restore Indus to its historical status

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