Tag Archives: IRSA

Alternative barrages must for Sindh agriculture

By DR ABDUL QADEER MEMON, Naushahro Feroze

THE Sindh government should seriously explore the possibility of building alternative barrages to save the agricultural sector of the province.

Sindh had the best irrigation system with three barrages, but due to inattention of the authorities concerned it had fallen prey to degradation.

The Irsa team had warned that a delta had been created in the Sukkur barrage’s water storage area which was threatening its structure.

The Sukkur barrage is 85 years old and used to feed eight million acres through its seven major canals. But it is in bad shape now for the past many years. The condition of Kotri and Guddu barrages is even worse.

The British used to determine the flow of water with tail gauges. However, today there is no concept for such gauges in the irrigation department.

The Sukkur barrage often faces different technical issues. The barrage would outlive its utility, so the government should start planning accordingly to protect agriculture.

During floods, its water discharges downstream Sukkur couldn’t flow under the Larkana-Khairpur and Dadu-Moro bridges. Alternative barrages have already been built in Punjab.

It seems as if the Sindh governement is waiting for the destruction of our agricultural sector. The government should explore the option of building an alternative to the Sukkur barrage.

Such barrages are necessary to save Sindh’s agriculture. Honest and hard-working engineers of the federal, Sindh and Punjab governments should be hired for the process.

Courtesy: DAWN
http://dawn.com/news/1034404

Theft unearthed: Sindh losing share as water goes missing

By Sarfaraz Memon

SUKKUR: At least 30,000 cusecs of water a day is unaccounted for between Chashma Barrage and Taunsa Barrage for over a week now, causing a shortage in all three barrages of Sindh.

“The water is either being stolen or is lost since May 30. Whenever fresh water arrives, a three to five per cent loss is factored in as some of it is absorbed by the embankments and some is lost to evaporation but losses of up to 30,000 cusecs is impossible,” a source in the irrigation department told The Express Tribune.

It is a common practice for influential landlords to divert water towards their lands or illegally suck out water through lift machines, particularly between Chashma and Taunsa and Taunsa and Guddu barrages, he said. This theft ultimately translates into a cut in Sindh’s water share and the authorities are doing nothing to curb this practice, he added.

The Sukkur Barrage control room in-charge, Abdul Aziz Soomro, said that they were concerned over as to where this huge quantity of water is going as it will affect the pond level of Guddu and Sukkur Barrage. He, too, said that a loss of 5,000 to 6,000 cusecs is acceptable but 30,000 cusecs is unfathomable.

Explaining the figures, he said that the travel time between Chashma and Taunsa is around two days and the discrepancy in the flow can be worked out by recording the flow downstream Chahsma, say on May 30, and upstream Taunsa on Jun 2.

Giving the overall water situation in Sindh, he said that upstream flow at Guddu Barrage was 83,050 cusecs while downstream it was 67,974 cusecs. At Sukkur Barrage, the flow was 67,240 and 24,250 upstream and downstream respectively while at Kotri the upstream flow stood at 11,936 cusecs. No water was being released downstream Kotri, he added.

Continue reading Theft unearthed: Sindh losing share as water goes missing

Kalabagh: the other view – By Hassan Abbas

THE consensus at the national, or shall we say political, level to build the Kalabagh dam for water and power does not exist.

Perhaps some areas of Pakistan will benefit from the dam while some others will not, but the question is whether Pakistan as a whole would earn any net benefits from its construction.

Those in favour of the dam almost religiously believe that without it we are doomed to a dry future. Why do they think so? Perhaps because a number of reports by foreign ‘experts’ say so. Who are these ‘experts’? Where do they come from? Why do they care? We shall revisit these questions, but first a couple of others.

Do we produce enough electric power in Pakistan? No. Do we have enough water storage capacity? Well, it depends on 1) how we define ‘enough’; and 2) ‘where’ we want to store. Of all the available water in the Indus basin of Pakistan, approximately 95 per cent is directed to agriculture of which over 70 per cent goes waste; less than 30 per cent of it is the actual requirement for the crops we grow.

The fact is, besides wasting water, we also spend billions in managing wastage of water in the name of SCARP (Salinity Control and Reclamation Project). Rather than planning for more water — at the rate of 70 per cent wastage — we need to invest in increasing irrigation efficiency.

We can build a new dam to store water, or we can use an available storage space in the form of natural ‘aquifers’. Current knowledge of hydrogeology tells us that water storage is carried out better in aquifers than in dams.

If only we refill the depleted aquifers under the city of Lahore, we can store more water than the Tarbela reservoir — that too with the least social and environmental impact.

Rachna, Thal and Bari Doabs all offer excellent aquifers which could be exploited for storage, offering a potential storage capacity hundreds of times more than that of Tarbela, Mangla and Kalabagh combined. Although refilling an aquifer would be expensive, it would be much cheaper than building a large dam.

What about power? Do we need a dam for it? Let’s do some simple math here: the dam building might cost $10 billion with an estimated generation capacity of 5GW. This power, however, enters the grid only after completion of the dam which might take, say, 15 years.

With the prevailing technology of solar power, it costs approximately 90 cents to produce one watt. Given $10bn, we produce 10GW and production can start within the first few months of the project, progressively reaching 10GW in, say, two years.

So what is better — $10bn for 10GW in two years or $10bn for 5GW after 15 years plus the huge social and environmental impact?

Despite all this, why are there ‘experts’ who insist that we build the dam — a solution which we, as a poor country, neither have the financial muscle to embark on nor the technical expertise to undertake. Consequently, this ‘solution’ makes us dependent on foreign ‘help’, financially and technically. And we have to pay for this ‘help’ with interest.

When a mega project (like a large dam) is undertaken in a poor country with the ‘help’ of some global financiers, the latter are actually ‘investing’ in the poor country on behalf of a few (rich) ‘donors’.

The donor countries also share part of the project proportionate to their share of ‘donation’, thus creating jobs and businesses for their own citizens involved in that project. With this, their ‘donated’ capital comes back to re-circulate within their own economies, while the economy of the country being ‘helped’ hardly benefits.

Till the project is complete, the host country accumulates a huge debt, plus interest, without having earned anything. As soon as the project starts delivering, the host country is obliged to meet the loan repayment schedule.

Continue reading Kalabagh: the other view – By Hassan Abbas

‘Downstream Kotri’

By: M Khan Sial, Karachi, Sindh

This refers to letter of Choudhry Hamid Malhi, Lahore (Aug 7) headlined above.

It was unfair to claim the so-called study of downstream Kotri was conducted by WAPDA in 2005, had approval of Sindh government. First of all, what was justification for WAPDA to delay the already agreed important survey for long period of 14 years of signing the Accord? This shows the malafide intentions of WAPDA against Sindh and as such WAPDA should clarify the reasons for delay and fix responsibility for this?

It was on record, the Sindh government had rejected the said so-called survey conducted by WAPDA as Sindh govt was not taken on board. Attending one or two meetings if any, does not mean, its decision had Sindh Government’s final approval.

If there is any approval of the so-called survey by Sindh government, WAPDA should release the copy of the agreement in media showing signatures of all concerned.

Later, the Sindh government had arranged survey through an international organisation as its own and as per media, it was recommended to release at least 10 MAF water annually downstream Kotri whereas internationally organised IUCN had also conducted the survey separately that recommended release of 32 to 35 MAF water annually as mandatory requirement. It was claimed that in WAPDA’s survey even it was agreed that 25 MAF water to be released within five years, but till today the said water was not released leaving Indus delta to ruin completely.

Continue reading ‘Downstream Kotri’

An appeal to Khadim-e-Aala

BY: MOHAMMAD KHAN SIAL, KARACHI, SINDH

Sindh Irrigation minister Saifullah Dharejo has repeatedly pointed out that Sindh’s share of water is being stolen through uplift pumps installed in the jurisdiction of Punjab for the past many years.

I request Punjab Chief Minister Shahbaz Sharif to take stern action against those who have been stealing Sindh’s share of water as this is creating a serious rift between the two provinces. I also request Irsa to ensure delivery of Sindh’s share of water at Guddu instead of Taunsa/Chashma in Punjab.

Courtesy: Business Recorder

http://www.brecorder.com/articles-a-letters/188:letters/1225503:an-appeal-to-khadim-e-aala/?date=2012-08-09

Stupid propaganda in favor of controversial Kalabagh dam

– by Gul Agha

Stupid propaganda resumes.. now some clowns are claiming that another mega-dam (KBD) would have spared flooding! How can a dam upstream hundreds of miles away provide safety from the monsoon rains? The dams already built have devastated forests in the floodplains removing trees which help soil absorb water and reduce flooding. Time to tear the dams down and let the river recreate land and regenerate forests through seasonal flooding.

Courtesy: Adopted from Facebook.

In India, the courts are acting on the problem of the pollution in Sindhu river, it would be better if the clowns in the Pakistani courts would do something real to save the river Sindh from pollution instead of playing petty power grab games.

PIL to save River Sindh: HC appoints commissioner

Srinagar: Jammu and Kashmir High Court here on Wednesday appointed a commissioner to ascertain allegations levelled in a Public Interest Litigation (PIL) that illegal constructions have come up along the banks of River Sindh.

An official said that Justice Hakim Imtiyaz Hussain and Justice Hasnain Massodi appointed Registrar Judicial, Kaneez Fatima, as commissioner and directed her to inspect along with Tehsildar Kangan the site and submit report within two weeks.

The PIL was submitted by advocate Qazi Rashid Shamas. The petitioner alleges that structures were being built on the river bed at three places— Mamar, Murgund and Knagan in violation of various statutes.

“In the process water is getting polluted and if immediate steps for retrieving river from encroachments and removing illegal constructions are not undertaken, the river environment and the surrounding ecology faces threats and hazards,” reads the PIL.

Continue reading In India, the courts are acting on the problem of the pollution in Sindhu river, it would be better if the clowns in the Pakistani courts would do something real to save the river Sindh from pollution instead of playing petty power grab games.

Controversial Kalabagh Dam will hurt the interests of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa and Sindh and Pakistan as well

A Case Against Kalabagh Dam: Aziz Narejo

Filling in the Dots: Why PILDAT is Reviving Kalabagh Debate: Introductory Note by Kamran Shafi

Kalabagh Dam is a very bad idea indeed. If ONLY for the reason that 3 out of 4 federating units of this blessed country have rejected it.

I am familiar enough with the Mardan-Nowshera-Charsadda area well enough to know that when without this monstrosity there is water standing along the roads just three feet below the level of the road there has to be a big problem of water-logging already.

I can only hope that sense prevails and that our already frayed federation is not damaged further.

We also must ask the question WHY an organisation whose goal is “to strengthen and sustain democracy and democratic institutions” in this poor country should re-raise a hugely contentious issue like the Kalabagh Dam? Which has been DEMOCRATICALLY rejected by three-fourths of the country.

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A case Against Kalabagh Dam – by Aziz Narejo

A recent seminar in Karachi organized by an NGO, PILDAT has again brought the issue of Kalabagh Dam to the fore. Especially an irrational and unscrupulous statement at the seminar by IRSA chairman (from Punjab) has flared up the emotions among the stakeholders.

Actually he is not alone in this. There is a certain lobby in Pakistan, which continues to insist on the construction of Kalabagh Dam on Indus River ignoring the fierce opposition from the provinces of Khyber- Pakhtoonkhwa and Sindh …

Read more : Indus Herald

Kalabagh dam : they want to control the water of Sindh for Punjab

Hypocrisy

By: M. Khan Sial, Karachi

Some of our friends belonging to Punjab are bent upon proving that havoc brought out by recent surplus flood water in the country, could have been averted if the controversial Kalabagh dam in Punjab existed and release of fresh water in sea to check sea intrusion is wastage. This is technically wrong contention as nowhere in the world surplus flood water are deposited in normal dams like Kalabagh due to their technicalities. Further, if any effort is made to control sudden spate of flood water, it did not succeed as spate of high flood water washed out the whole dam. Further superb floods come after 22 years in Pakistan. If we presume the water of flood is absorbed in proposed Kalabagh dam, should we wait for 22 years to fill the dam after spending billions of rupees on its construction and maintenance?

Further, the experts in various seminars have expressed their views that site of controversial Kalabagh dam is in earthquake zone and also underground range of salt mines existed there. Since some people want to control the water of Sindh for Punjab, they are trying to spread misinformation. Sometimes, they call it release of water in sea as wastage despite in the 74 deltas of the world, fresh water is released to push sea water back. It is very unfortunate pro-Kalabagh dam lobby belonging to Punjab, are claiming they are only well-wishers of rest three provinces and also of the country whereas people of three provinces are not well wishers of their own provinces or country.

What hypocrisy! Such people are unable to tell why they remained mum on untimely demise of Indus delta? Why “Water Accord – 1991” after its signing on it and passing 19 years, was not implemented in letter and spirit? Internationally recognised IUCN has recommended release of 35MAF water downstream Kotri but mighty Punjab is not allowing this resulting in mass migration in the area and ruination of eco-system, increase of poverty and dangerous sea intrusion.

Continue reading Kalabagh dam : they want to control the water of Sindh for Punjab

Pakistan: Kalabagh dam threatens livelihood of millions

by Ray Fulcher

GREEN LEFT

… construction of a massive dam in 2016 on the Indus river at Kalabagh, near the border between the Punjab and North West Frontier provinces. Opponents of the World Bank-funded dam project see it as another grab for water by the Punjabi ruling elite, which dominates federal politics in Pakistan.

The government claims that the dam is necessary for Pakistan’s economic development, that it will provide 3600 megawatts of hydroelectric power and 35,000 jobs.

Musharraf has said that the dam project will proceed against any opposition and that the federal and Punjabi governments will topple any provincial government that opposes the project. Of Pakistan’s four provinces, three provincial parliaments — North West Frontier (NWFP), Sindh and Balochistan — have passed resolutions opposing the dam.

On December 31, four progressive parties in Punjab united to protest against the proposed dam. The rally, held in Lahore, was charged by police, and activists of the four parties — the National Workers Party, the Labour Party Pakistan (LPP), the Pakistan Mazdoor Mehaz and the Mazdoor Kissan Party — were beaten.

Farooq Tariq, an organiser of the rally and national secretary of the LPP told Green Left Weekly by phone: “The LPP opposes the dam because it will deny Sindh its share of water and turn it into a desert. We oppose the construction of big dams on environmental grounds. Furthermore, this dam will benefit the Punjab ruling class and will add to the exploitation of Sindh. All provinces except the Punjab have repeatedly opposed the construction of this dam. This democratic verdict should be taken as a referendum and the dam abandoned.

Continue reading Pakistan: Kalabagh dam threatens livelihood of millions

Appeal to Ban Ki-moon

I am a senior citizen and writer from Pakistan – an active member of United Nations and hereby appeal to your honour drawing your immediate personal attention towards an important matter meant to safeguard a vital part suffering from environmental & human disaster which is imminent in the shape of untimely sad demise of Indus delta – once the sixth largest in the world.

Unfortunately, our elected President Asif Ali Zardari and Prime Minister Syed Yousaf Raza Gillani in addition to previous army dictator and racist General (r) Musharraf and previous elected Prime Minister M. Nawaz Sharif all were obviously not interested to save the Indus delta from unnatural death. Nevertheless, the former Prime Minister Ms Benazir Bhutto had announced decision of her govt for proposed Port at Keti Bunder to save the delta but her government’s successor M. Nawaz not only abandoned the project but shifted the money of Project, for construction of the Motor Highway (Lahore-Rawalpindi) in his native province, Punjab.

The United Nations and all international Commissions on Human Rights are fully aware about the environmental and human disaster throughout the world and striving hard to safeguard affected areas. On the contrary, our rulers are bent upon to destroy the delta by neglecting its basic requirements of survival in order to retain their political gains in Punjab. Sorry to say they have, obviously, no concern to the unnatural sad demise of Indus delta and its extensive formidable affects on the people of Sindh.

No regular release of fresh water for several years despite at least 10MAF downstream Kotri guaranteed in “Water Accord – 1991” to save the delta, with pending survey to determine exact amount of water for release, were not allowed to implement even after 19 years the Accord was signed, resulting in mass migration of one million people from the delta, tremendous increase in poverty and unemployment, ruination of eco-system including flora and fauna, degradation of land, formidable sea intrusion resulting in inundating of 2.6 million acres of land, considerable reduction in export of sea food and much more.

After a long period of 15 years signing the Accord, the federal government conducted a study in 2005 through International Panel of Experts (IPEs) that recommended 25MAF for the released annually downstream Kotri whereas IUCN – an international reputed organisation, separately conducted survey which recommended 35MAF water release downstream Kotri but nothing implemented yet.

The Sindh Government in its official briefing to the visiting Senate Committee on Water headed by Senator Lashkari Raisani a few months ago said: “If the situation remained unchanged, centuries-old historical city of Thatta and Badin in Sindh would disappear within next 20 years whereas sea intrusion is inundating 80 acres of land per day.”

Nevertheless, Punjab still wants to build controversial Kalabagh dam despite three out of four provincial assemblies have already passed about 10 resolutions against its construction. The dam is bound to turn Sindh into desert despite the fact about 1500 dams have been decommissioned through out world, to protect the environment. As per new definition of the Indus delta, 80 per cent of present of Sindh covered as delta area, therefore, the ruination of the delta would also ruin the whole Sindh.

It is requested to your honour and also all Commissions on Human Rights to immediately intervene and concentrate their efforts to save Indus delta from man-made environmental & human disaster for which our present and future generations would not forgive us for centuries to come.

Mohammad Khan Sial,

Karachi, Sindh

Courtesy:>> Statesmam , 21-08-2010

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More on Kalabagh dam >> BBC urdu

Kalabagh dam would have caused more flooding: Expert

KBD would have caused more flooding: expert

* Former IRSA chief says dam is not a flood-control project

* ANP says dam would have done immense harm to KP, Sindh

By Iqbal Khattak

PESHAWAR: The Kalabagh Dam – had it been built – would have caused flooding rather than averting it, a former chairman of the Indus River System Authority (IRSA) said on Wednesday, while responding to Prime Minister Yousaf Raza Gilani’s recent statement about the dam.

“The dam’s effect on floods would have been contrary to what the prime minister claimed,” said Fatehullah Khan Gandapur, who headed IRSA from 1993 to 1998.

The KP leadership has criticised the PM’s statement, and Information Minister Mian Iftikhar Hussain termed the project “a dead horse”. “Kalabagh dam is not a flood-control project,” Gandapur said while talking to Daily Times on Wednesday. [August 11, 2010] “It is a run-of-the-river project and its design has to be changed if we want to make it a flood-control project,” he said.

Gandapur said the dam’s construction would have caused reverse flow in the Kabul River, submerging Nowshera district and water-logging the entire Peshawar valley. “Consultants have called the dam’s design a failure,” he said.

The Awami National Party is in no mood to compromise on its position over the dam. “Their (pro-dam elements) philosophy is to let the whole of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa drown,” senior ANP leader Senator Haji Adeel said. “Why doesn’t Islamabad look at other feasible projects instead of only eyeing the Kalabagh Dam, which aims to destroy two provinces?” he asked. “There are other projects that, if undertaken, will help you avoid flood and destruction,” he said. “Had the Kalabagh Dam been built, it would have sunk Akora Khattak and Jehangira towns in Nowshera district and its effects would also have been felt in Pabbi town,” Adeel said.

“Why don’t you build dams from where the water is coming?” he asked, adding that Basha Dam would be able to store 800,000 cusecs and Munda Dam 300,000 cusecs of water.

Courtesy: DAILY TIMES, August 12, 2010

A letter against Kalabagh dam

Floods and Kalabagh Dam

by MUNAWAR HASSAN, Islamabad

Sir: I can recall Prime Minister (PM) Gilani’s first speech in parliament, when he categorically rejected the construction of the Kalabagh Dam. Later, it was observed that he appeared very political about the subject. Raja Pervaiz Ashraf also refused to reject the scheme. Now PM Gilani has come up with an even more surprising stance that the destruction caused by the floods could have been averted had the dam been in place. It is baffling to see that the PM thinks that the amount of floodwater is just six million acre feet (MAF), which is the capacity of the Kalabagh Dam. The volume of floodwater runs up to 1.2 million cusecs (more than 100 MAF). What does PM Gilani propose for the rest of the 94 MAF of water? Moreover, the disaster would have aggravated if the water had flown upstream due to the dam on the Indus River. In addition, to collect water from a flood (which is a rare occurrence in Pakistan), the country’s leadership is prepared to destroy the Indus delta permanently. I humbly request the PM to avoid making such statements in public that perplex the people rather than giving them courage to face the calamity.

Courtesy: DAILY TIMES, August 12, 2010

A proposal for federation

Many recurrences of theft of Sindh’s share of irrigation water happened at various times due to Punjab’s jurisdiction over it.

– MOHAMMAD KHAN SIAL, KARACHI

This has been happening since long and against hue and cry by members of Parliament from Sindh who protested several times. Sindh never gets its due share of water in full when it is released by Punjab’s jurisdiction, mainly due to the following three reasons; (1) Seepage (2) Evaporation (3) Installation of hundreds of powerful illegal ‘water-lift machines’ installed on both banks of River Indus between Taunsa and Sindh’s border on a distance of about 80 kilometres. The water of Sindh is being stolen by landlords of Punjab obviously in connivance with officers of the Punjab Irrigation Department and WAPDA. In the past, a few Irrigation Officers from Sindh were deputed to the canals of Punjab to deter theft of the water meant for Sindh but their efforts were foiled or Punjabi Irrigation Officers bribed them.

In return for the ‘favours’ they received in Lahore, they were compelled to send fake figures of water flow to Sindh government from Punjab which were provided to them by the Punjab Irrigation Department. These figures were obviously unauthentic and fake. If the stake-holders of the federation want to resolve this problem on a permanent basis, I suggest the Indus River System Authority (IRSA) should be told to strictly ensure that Sindh’s share of irrigation water is delivered at Guddu in Sindh instead of Taunsa in Punjab. I hope the federal Ministry for Water & Power as well as IRSA would take this decision with consent of the all concerned to resolve the problem once for all.

Courtesy: The Nation, July 21, 2010

AT activists protest against reopening of C-J canal

HYDERABAD, July 21: Activists of the Awami Tehreek staged a sit-in for six hours on the National Highway at Hatri bypass here on Wednesday in protest against reopening of the Chashma-Jhelum link canal, release of water into Greater Thal canal, proposed construction of Bhasha-Diamar dam and tribal. A large number of men, women and children, raised slogans against what they called a theft of Indus water.

Speaking on the occasion, chief of the Awami Tahreek Rasool Bux Palijo said that Sindh was the creator of Pakistan but it was being pushed against the wall. He said Sindh was passing through the worst phase of its history and alleged that the government wanted to destroy the province.

The government was following an international conspiracy against the country, Mr Palijo said and added that rulers had always acted against the interests of the country under the dictates of foreign powers. He expressed solidarity with all the oppressed nations of the world. …

Read more >> DAWN

International Rivers: Bhasha Dam Project

Since Kalabagh Dam issue have been put to sleep [not to rest], here is a new crisis for Sindh, now you have to take on our “friends” in NWFP, besides Punjab.

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Diamer-Bhasha Dam

The new government of Pakistan is considering another big dam project. The Diamer-Bhasha Dam on the Indus River in northern Pakistan comes with an astounding price tag of over US$8.5 billion. The 200-square-kilomete r reservoir would flood 100 kilometers of the Karakoram highway, and the villages and farms of over 35,000 people would disappear. Tens of thousands of thousand-year old rock carvings would vanish. The project, after an eight-year construction period, would provide 4500 MW of electricity for the national grid, but it would not address the far more pressing issue that half of Pakistan’s population (around 80 million people) have no electricity access whatsoever. Diamer-Bhasha is a costly project that would only benefit industries and wealthy Pakistanis.

Continue reading International Rivers: Bhasha Dam Project

Well Done Punjab/ Pakistan!

…. stealing the water of Sindh. –  Mir Raza

Killing of Habib Jalib Balouch and stealing the water of Sindh by force has damaged the old and already fragmented edifice of this country but the short heightened leadership of Paunjab have no vision to see this damage.

… They are DWARFS, they can’t read the writing on the wall, they haven’t learned from the seceding of Bangladesh from Pakistan, murdering 4 Bhuttos and sending their dead bodies to Sindh. They are racist and fascist, they are killers, that is way today Balochistan is bleeding.

They think, they can steal water and other resources of Sindh and Baluchistan. They can open Chashma-Jehlum link (CJ) canal by force but they don’t know how much damage they have done of this federation by their illegal actions. By Opening CJ Canal illegally, they are working well to destroy the rest of Pakistan. Well Done Punjab.

Courtesy: Sindhi e-lists/ e-groups, July 15, 2010

Balochs Support Sindhi People’s Legitimate Struggle for Their Waters

Baloch Human Rights Council (UK) Supports Sindhi People’s Legitimate Struggle for Their Waters

London: Baloch Human Rights Council UK (BHRC-UK) in a press release issued today condemned the acting Chairman of Indus River System Authority’s (IRSA) for the unilateral and illegal decision to open Chashma-Jehlum link canal.

BHRC-UK noted that while in Sindh people do not have water to drink forget about agriculture, this is a criminal act which shows their continued disregard and arrogance towards the rights of other nations.

BHRC-UK recognises the historical rights of Sindhis on their natural resources including waters and notes with great concern the arrogant disregard of the unanimous decisions of Sindh, Balochistan and Paktunkhuwa assemblies, thousands of rallies, strikes and hunger strikes in Sindh and demands of the civil society organisations.

BHRC demands that the Chashma-Jehlum Link Canal should be immediately closed and reiterated that Baloch people are together with their sindhi brothers in their legitimate struggle for their historical rights on waters of river Indus.

London – 15 july 2010

WATER WAR

‘If no water for Sindh, no port for Punjab’

KARACHI: Sindh can stop supplying gas to Punjab, block highways leading towards the province and cut its connection from seaports if Punjab tries to block its water, said Dr Kaisar Bengali, Adviser to Chief Minister on planning and development.

Addressing a seminar titled Democracy, Provincial Autonomy, Challenges and Future Prospects on Sunday, he said the decision of the Indus River System Authority (Irsa) acting chairman to open the Chashma-Jhelum link canal was a violation of the Irsa act.

This irrational attitude of the Punjab bureaucracy is not new, Bengali claimed, adding that they have been controlling more than their share of the nation’s resources.

“Punjab and Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa would have no other option but to ink [transit] agreements with India if we cut off their link of Port Qasim and stopped supplying gas,” he said.

Punjab has forgotten that the province receives rainfall as all the clouds head towards to from Sindh, the adviser said with a smile.

The participants of the seminar resolved that the Chashma-Jhelum link canal should be closed and demanded for the federal government to honour its commitments and agreements regarding the distribution of the Indus waters.

They also claimed that the Irsa acting chairman should be punished for violating regulations.

He went on to say that Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) is now confined to Punjab and 50 per cent of the parliamentarians who have fake degrees belong to the party.

Meanwhile, Sindh Assembly Speaker Nisar Ahmed Khuhro said that the Sindh government has achieved the National Finance Commission (NFC) award after a 19-year struggle. The people opposing the government’s policies had signed the NFC award allotting only 37 per cent of the share to the provinces, he said, adding, “Credit should be given to the present government for giving 56 per cent share of the finances to the provinces.”

Courtesy: Published in The Express Tribune, July 12th, 2010.

Disparity in water distribution is a major cause of conflict in Pakistan

aziz

Seeds of discontent: discrepancy in water distribution

by Aziz Narejo, TX

Disparity in water distribution is a major cause of conflict in the country. It creates anger, ill-will, animosity and agitation among the people and the provinces. The government’s failure to address the issue in an appropriate, effective and impartial manner makes the matter worse.

Continue reading Disparity in water distribution is a major cause of conflict in Pakistan

Where do we seek justice for destruction of Indus Delta?

by: Khalid Hashmani, McLean, Virginia

.. Indus Delta Development Program (DDP) has several articles on how Sindh’s delta region is getting destroyed systematically by the greediness of one upper riparian province. The article “The green postures of Indus Delta are turning into desert and lifeless” traces the prosperity of this area from Kalhora rule to the destructive transformation of this area since 1947. During Kalhora era, 170 Million Acre Feet (MAF) of water used to flow into the delta compared to 5-6 MAF that is being allowed now.

An article published in the Daily news on April 10, 2010 says “… Indus delta was dying and at least 35 MAF water flow was required downstream Kotri on permanent basis for its restoration, otherwise the delta would completely vanish and the sea would erode the coastal land”.

Continue reading Where do we seek justice for destruction of Indus Delta?

Ayaz Latif Palijo blames PPP government handing over the control of waters of Indus to Punjab to prolong its rule

Sindh-Punjab water dispute: AT calls for appointment of international commission

DAWN

HYDERABAD, May 24: Awami Tehrik leaders have called for appointment of an international commission to solve decades-old dispute over water share in Indus and other rivers between Sindh and Punjab.

Addressing a demonstration and sit-in outside the press club here on Monday in protest against acute shortage of water in the province, AT president Ayaz Latif Palijo, Hakeem Zangejo, Ms Rozina Bhutto and Nazeer Memon called for releasing 35 MAF water downstream Kotri barrage and compensation to Sindh for “theft of its share in water”.

Continue reading Ayaz Latif Palijo blames PPP government handing over the control of waters of Indus to Punjab to prolong its rule

Pakistan : Punjab ’s highhandedness on Sindh’s water

London, UK, (PR) : World Sindhi Congress (WSC) strongly condemns the highhandedness of Punjab govt with regards to water of river Indus. Despite, calls from three provincial assemblies, the members of water body IRSA, political and civil society organisations, thousands of demonstrations, strikes, hunger strikes of people of Sindh, the upper riparian jingoists are determined to overrun the overwhelming case of Sindh over waters of river Indus. The case of Sindh over water has been proven again and again on the basis of international law, historical rights and the water treatise, still Punjab govt is adamant to carry out its illegal domination and use of waters of river Indus. The current crisis has resulted from allowing illegally water to flow in Chashma-Jehlam Link Canal and Thal canal for irrigation, while people of Sindh do not have water to drink. Punjab has stored water in Mangla Dam for autumn cultivation while Sindh’s fertile lands are fast becoming a lifeless desert. The man-made water crisis is threatening the extinction of a civilisation that flourished for thousands of years. The current arrogant chauvinism of Punjab govt has taken the conflict and crisis to a new height. The entire Sindh is burning.

WSC humbly requests all the political parties of Sindh, NGOs, and civil society organisations to take a united stand, leaving all differences behind, on this issue of bare survival.

WSC to take the case of people of Sindh for their survival against the criminal onslaught of upper riparian province on their rightful waters to all relevant international venues including United Nations, UNPFII (United Nations Permanent Forum on Indigenous Issues) and Environmental and Water NGOs. WSC is also seriously exploring all the possibilities to take this case to the International Court of Justice in Hague, The Netherland.

July 11, 2010

Punjab – Sindh : Troubled waters

Sindh

Editorial : Troubled waters

With both the Punjab and Sindh holding firm on their stance over the controversial opening of the Chashma-Jhelum link canal, which has led the member of the Indus River System Authority (Irsa) from Sindh and the federation to ready their resignations, the prime minister has been forced to intervene. He will be attempting to pour oil over the churning waters. But even as he does so, there seems to be a realisation that the structure of Irsa may need to be altered to prevent the periodic tidal waves that erupt and threaten to cause a great deal of damage.The orders issued by the member from the Punjab, who is also acting chairman of the authority, would serve the interests of his province but damage those of Sindh by reducing flow down the Indus. To rub salt into wounds, the Punjab has now sought additional water through the canal. There is quite evidently an element of selfishness in the way water is demanded by each province, heedless of the needs of others. The battles between the Punjab and Sindh represent nothing new. But if we look at the matter realistically and dispassionately, it seems almost inevitable that this will happen. The Punjab, as the majority province, has not been known for its sensitivity to the concerns of others. And hence the current acrimony on this issue, with the smaller provinces clearly feeling discriminated against.

Read more >>- The Express Tribune

Indus river : No one bothers about water problem: Abbasi

By Mohammad Hussain Khan

HYDERABAD, Nov 7: Eminent water expert and former chairman of the Technical Committee on Water Resources A.N.G Abbasi has said his report on water should be buried once and for all as no one seems to be ready to implement it.

Continue reading Indus river : No one bothers about water problem: Abbasi

Water theft

IRSA Sindh chief resigns

KARACHI: The chairman Indus River System Authority (IRSA), Amanullah Khan, has resigned from his post citing his inability to perform the duties.

In a letter to Ministry of Water and Power, he said it was difficult to carry out his official obligations so he was tendering his resignation.

The sources in IRSA Sindh said Sindh usually receives its irrigation water quota by May 7 every year but due to closure of CJ Link Canal, the Sindh growers have lost the benefit of May weather on the crops.

“Water theft is on the rise in Punjab and other provinces are not getting their due share of irrigation water,” he added.

Usually water from CJ Link Canal is released by April 15 every crop season but this time, Sindh is still waiting for its water share.

Sindh is still waiting for around 65,000 cusecs of water of its quota, whereas province has only received 23,000 cusecs of water this season, he maintained. The Punjab government released about 25,000 cusecs water from CJ Link Canal during 17 days of talks with Sindh officials.

Read more >>- Daily Times

Courtesy:  http://www.dailytimes.com.pk/default.asp?page=20106\30\story_30-6-2010_pg5_12

Stop Sucking Indus River through illegal canals (leeches)

Harees of Sindh are awakening and fighting for their rights

by: Khalid Hashmani

Newspaper stories indicate that Sindhi Harees have reached the point where they feel that enough is enough. They are fighting back and it may be the beginning of the end of the exploiters who have dug illegal canals (Leeches)/ [Chashma Link canal] and dams to siphon off water from the Indus river before it reaches Sindh. Let us support their cause and join their struggle to bring an end to their plight.

Continue reading Stop Sucking Indus River through illegal canals (leeches)

Punjab’s guarantees on Kalabagh are only “show-piece”?

Need for consensus on dams

BY: MOHAMMAD KHAN SIAL, Karachi, Sindh

DAWN

This is apropos of Khursheed Anwer’s letter “Consensus on dam” (June 18) which states: “Sindh has been guaranteed 2.2maf additional water from the Kalabagh dam, what more consensus do the politicians want?”

It appears that the writer has not been to the depth of the problem. In the “Water Appropriation Accord 1991”, at least a release of 10maf water for downstream Kotri was also guaranteed but was never implemented even after the passing of 20 years. So what is the use of guarantees when they were never implemented in letter and spirit but only worked as “show-pieces”?

The controversial Chashma-Jhelum Link Canal in Punjab was the original Flood Canal, but many times Punjab has released water unilaterally despite a severe deficit of water in Sindh. During the deficit, Punjab has taken its full share of water multiple times by force. This can be seen in the AGN Abbasi Report.

Had the water been released downstream Kotri, sea intrusion would not have inundated 2.4 million acres of valuable land in Sindh. According to the Sindh government, almost 80m acres of land are inundated by sea intrusion. The government of Sindh firmly believes that if the situation remains the same, the historical city of Thatta and also Badin would disappear within 20 years. This is all because the “Water Accord – 1991” which was accepted by Sindh with reservations was not implemented in letter and spirit.

Recently, the NFC Award, announced with consensus, showed that even guarantees given in the Constitution were not sufficient. The same happened when the Thar coal, which was a provincial subject, was taken up by the Centre against the constitution and a notification was also issued but after much hue and cry from Sindh, it was rolled back.

I suggest that those who are sincere supporters of the dam should first demand the following:

1. At least 10maf should be released downstream Kotri as envisaged in “The Water Accord – 1991”.

2. Sindh must be given its due share of water at Guddu.

3. The Flood Canal, i.e. the Chashma–Jhelum Link Canal, must be closed permanently except for the availability of excess water during floods.

4. The controversial Wapda must be dismembered as it had twisted facts and figures to support Punjab. Three out of four provinces are not happy with its performance and the prime minister called it a “white elephant” like Zulfikar Ali Bhutto had once did.

5. All efforts must be made to save the Indus Delta as its ruination is bound to have environmental repercussions on Sindh. Only implementation of the Water Accord–1991 will guarantee this.

6. Punjab must admit the theft it committed on Sindh water and must pay compensation for it.

Sunday, 20 Jun, 2010

Courtesy:- http://www.dawn.com/wps/wcm/connect/dawn-content-library/dawn/the-newspaper/letters-to-the-editor/need-for-consensus-on-dams-060

Dams must be dismantled

By: Prof. Gul Agha

Dams have allowed the powerful and corrupt elite to create new lands upstream and rob the poor people downstream.

Dams have blocked 90% of silt flow, destroyed forest in the flood plains and turned Sindh into desert Sindh. The river brings not only water but rich soil — just as important for agriculture and to protect the sea water from encroaching.

All dams must be dismantled — the advanced countries are all dismantling dams. Water conservation is essential, therefore, the best storage is small lakes built downstream.

28/04/2008