Tag Archives: river

China’s Discreet Hold on Pakistan’s Northern Borderlands

By SELIG S. HARRISON

While the world focuses on the flood-ravaged Indus River valley, a quiet geopolitical crisis is unfolding in the Himalayan borderlands of northern Pakistan, where Islamabad is handing over de facto control of the strategic Gilgit-Baltistan region in the northwest corner of disputed Kashmir to China.

The entire Pakistan-occupied western portion of Kashmir stretching from Gilgit in the north to Azad (Free) Kashmir in the south is closed to the world, in contrast to the media access that India permits in the eastern part, where it is combating a Pakistan-backed insurgency. But reports from a variety of foreign intelligence sources, Pakistani journalists and Pakistani human rights workers reveal two important new developments in Gilgit-Baltistan: a simmering rebellion against Pakistani rule and the influx of an estimated 7,000 to 11,000 soldiers of the People’s Liberation Army.

China wants a grip on the region to assure unfettered road and rail access to the Gulf through Pakistan. It takes 16 to 25 days for Chinese oil tankers to reach the Gulf. When high-speed rail and road links through Gilgit and Baltistan are completed, China will be able to transport cargo from Eastern China to the new Chinese-built Pakistani naval bases at Gwadar, Pasni and Ormara, just east of the Gulf, within 48 hours.

Many of the P.L.A. soldiers entering Gilgit-Baltistan are expected to work on the railroad. Some are extending the Karakoram Highway, built to link China’s Sinkiang Province with Pakistan. Others are working on dams, expressways and other projects.

Read more >> The New York Times

Sindhis Scramble to Escape Floods

Pakistanis Scramble to Escape Floods

By CARLOTTA GALL

THATTA, Pakistan — This town had already been evacuated because of the threat of flooding, but it filled up again on Saturday with tens of thousands of people fleeing floodwaters that had inundated surrounding districts and villages after the Indus River broke its embankments in several places.

Families camped in front of the courthouse, in a park, in an ancient cemetery, in schools, at intersections and on scrub land for miles on the edge of the town. There was no organization to it: people tied their cattle to bushes, rigged up awnings with colored cloth on sticks or tipped rope beds on their ends to create shade from the stifling heat of 104 degrees. Within hours thousands more people had swarmed into the town, many of them on foot. …

Read more >> The New York Times

The word terrorism does not even exist in Sindhi and Seraiki, the languages of the majority of the people who have been rendered homeless”

Pakistan flood victims ‘have no concept of terrorism’

By Mohammed Hanif

…These areas are of no strategic interest to anyone because they have neither exported terrorism nor do they have the ambition to join a fight against it.

Their only export to the world outside is onions, tomatoes, sugar cane, wheat and mangoes.

The word terrorism does not even exist in Seraiki and Sindhi, the languages of the majority of the people who have been rendered homeless.

They belong to that forgotten part of humanity that has quietly tilled the land for centuries, the small farmers, the peasants, the farmhands, generations of people who are born and work and die on the same small piece of land.

Continue reading The word terrorism does not even exist in Sindhi and Seraiki, the languages of the majority of the people who have been rendered homeless”

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

Flood – Who caused devastation in Sindh?

by Munawar Ali

We know that this is not the only flood in history. On one hand the corrupt govenment officials put all funds in their pockets and [according to conspiracy theories] on the other hand some selfish politicians artificially cut the Torri bund just to save their lands and some say to save Pano Aqil cantonment. These leaders have drowned and destroyed whole Sindh now. There is Ali Wahan site from where normally water is discharged in case of such floods, which would have caused least damage to the life of people and few towns affected. Now whole of upper Sindh is drowned and still continuing, spreading to all of Sindh. This is very disturbing that for personal gains of couple of politicians whole Sindh has been destroyed.

Courtesy: Mehran & SANAlist, August 16, 2010

Indus : The “Great Mother”

Will the Pakistan floods strike again?

By Howard Falcon-Lang

The recent floods in Pakistan’s Indus Valley are of truly Biblical proportions. …

The “Great Mother”

The Indus is one of the world’s great rivers.

From its headwaters in the Himalayas of Tibet, it flows north-west through India before turning sharply south across Pakistan. It finally discharges into the Arabian Sea, a journey of some 3,200km (2,000 miles). ….

… ..During a warm period 6,000 years ago, the Indus was a monster river, more powerful and more prone to flooding than today.

Then, 4,000 years ago, as the climate cooled, a large part of it simply dried up. Deserts appeared whether mighty torrents once flowed.

Professor Clift believes that this failure of the Indus may have triggered the collapse of the great Harappan civilisation.

The city ruins of Mohenjo-daro, a relict of this lost culture, date from the time when the rivers ran dry. …

To read full article >> BBC Science & Environment

Flood devastation blamed on shrinking forest cover

KARACHI, Aug 13: The Pakistan Fisherfolk Forum on Friday observed that floods caused devastation on a massive scale because local feudal lords with the connivance of government officials and legislators of successive ruling parties had cut forests and encroached upon its land for cultivation.

Besides, the small embankments they had built in the riverbed to stop the natural flow of the Indus River and to cultivate crops resulted in the flooding of low-lying settlements along the river, observed the participants of a PFF meeting held to review the flood situation in Sindh.

Read more >> DAWN

Flood in Sindh and Corruption

by Sarfraz Memon

Every year there is budget of billions of rupees to clean the canals and reinforce the banks, but that never happens. We all know how much rich are the corrupt engineers of irrigation department in Sindh. Those corrupt ministers, engineers, civil-Military bureaucrats and politicians  proudly display their bungalows that value 100-200 million rupees. Have multiple cars and drivers. Have lands and fishing ponds. And because they don’t want people to see all they have, they probably own kilograms of gold, for future use. These corrupt engineers don’t even settle for Lacs, but Crores every month. The race goes on between irrigation and other specialties such as roads and buildings, who make billions of rupees showing roads, public facilities, sewer, and schools, built on paper. …

Courtesy: SANAlist, August 13, 2010

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

The attitude of so called National Electronic media towards the people of Sindh!?!?

“Motherland in Distress

By Dr. Ahmed H. Makhdoom, Singapore

Districts of Jacobabad (my own District), Kashmore and Shikarpur have been devastated by the Flood. About 800,000 peoples have been displaced so far. One Teluka/ Tehsil Headquarters in Thull of Dist Jacobabad has also been flooded. Karampur, Darri and Deenpur have been Flooded. Now even Jacobabad city is under threat along with my own village, Sheranpur, which is more than 100 km away from Indus. Thousands are trapped in inundated towns and villages but not yet rescued even after four days. All Roads which are safe so far and District Headquarters are flooded and are full with influx of displaced peoples.

In spite of such a worse condition, and worsening hour by hour, day by day, none of our so called “ National Electronic Media,”, have covered them! Only Sindhi News Channels are covering it. You can imagine the severity of the conditions that only the Sindhi media is showing, Flood devastation, 24 hrs , no other news. Whereas, so called electronic media is stuck up in Shoe matters, criticising each other and frivolous and unnecessary blabbering of so- called national TV Channels. No NGOs are even seen in the field!

This is the state of affairs in just three Districts of Sindh which is still worsening. This water still has to move further to Larkana, Khairpur, etc upto  Ocean.

Is Sindh the part of Pakistan or neighbor  country. Behavior of so called national media with the people of Sindh is questionable when they are devastated by the flood. Instead of covering flood victims in Sindh, they are doing their own politics by sitting in the studios. Does this attitude of so called national media need any further comments?

The frustration and disappointment can easily be seen written on the faces of Sindhis. Just imagine the villages of the Federal Ministers, the Members of Parliament and Assemblies, the Landlords, the Zameendars, the Paathaareedars, the Leaders, are inundated with floods. But, who cares! They sit with bottles of Johnny Walker open in their lush, lavish, comfortable palatial houses in Islamabad or Karachi, with Heera Mandi girls serving their every wish!

And, then the stupid, selfish, self-serving Sindhi leaders, so-called ‘nationalists,’ the Peeplas and other scavenging pathaareedars will say: “Don’t criticise us!” Criticise the Sindhis in Diaspora!”

I, too have, criticised the Sindhi Diaspora in the past, and continue doing so! But, to say that they have “Done Nothing,” is going a little too far! May be they need to do more! Yes, they must! But, we must also ‘give credit where credit is due.’ We should also praise, acknowledge and commend their distinguished and deserving efforts in providing scholarships to the Sindhi students, holding free Medical camps throughout Sindh, providing Water pumps to the needy villages in Sindh, helping the poor, destitute and putthheeya ughhaarro (shirtless) Sindhis in Sindh! Voicing the concerns against human rights violations in Sindh at various International Forums, pressurising the World community to do something for the wretched, terrorised, tormented and tortured people of Sindh and many, many more!

And, there are many in the Diaspora, who have been, one way or another, feeding the hungry, clothing the shirtless, shielding the shelter-less, providing Education for a little Niyaannee, books for a Sindhi mbachrro, and many more, all from their own pockets. But, they do not go around BLOWING THEIR OWN TRUMPET as so-called Sindhi leaders, politicians, paathaareedars do!

Even Islam says: ”You give from one hand, in such a way that the other hand shall not see!” And, many in the Diaspora are doing this without asking for anything in return – in kind or favours! They don’t even want ‘a pat on the back.’ They consider this service as their moral, ethical, virtuous, honourable, proper and principled duty towards their motherland,

Yes, Sir, muhnja Saaeen, give credit where credit is due! Diaspora has done their bit! May be, it is time, that they do a little more in the emergency situation and, therefore, I appeal all the worthy Diaspora organisations to STAND UP and BE COUNTED! Motherland in distress.

Courtesy: Sindhi e-lists/ e-groups, August 12, 2010

WSC Raises issues of Sindh

WSC Raises Appropriation of Water from River Indus and Plunder of Natural Resources of Sindh in Liberation AGM

London- (PR) : World Sindhi Congress raised the appropriation of water from River Indus and plunder of natural resources of Sindh at the Annual General Meeting (AGM) of Liberation held in London on 24th July 2010. World Sindhi Congress was represented by Dr Haleem Bhatti, Suraiya Makhdoom, and Dr Rubina Greenwood.

Continue reading WSC Raises issues of Sindh

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

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.

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?

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

End of the River?

Of the two largest Southasian deltas, one flourishes as the other faces the threat of being overrun by the sea.

by Amar Guriro

At a time when melting glaciers, shrinking coastal lands, depleting freshwater sources and vanishing forests are hot issues across the world, the tidal mangrove forests of the Sundarban constitute an encouraging example of effective conservation. Spread over 10,000 sq km in India and Bangladesh, with some 60 percent falling in the latter, the Sundarban, part of the Ganges delta, the world’s largest, takes in the endpoints of the mighty Ganga, Meghna and Brahmaputra rivers. A fusion zone of fresh- and saltwater, constituting a complex network of tidal waterways, vast scattered mudflats and hundreds of small islands filled with salt-tolerant mangroves, and home to a dizzying array of plants and animals, the Sundarban was recognised as a World Heritage Site in 1987.

Continue reading End of the River?

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

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

Kalabagh: Development or Disaster

By ABRAR KAZI

Sindh Water Committee and Anti–Greater Thal Canal Committee, Hyderabad

Courtesy: Daily Dawn

THIS refers to Engr Mazhar Ali’s article ‘Kalabagh dam: development or disaster’ (April 29) in which he has spoken about the merits of constructing new dams on the River Indus. In the footnote he has been described as a member of the Technical Committee on Water Resources (TCWR). But unless there was a printing error in the report (Dawn, Dec 27, 2005), the committee member was Dr Iqbal Ali.

Continue reading Kalabagh: Development or Disaster

Dam deconstruction!!

The Theodosia River diversion dam will be the first dam in Canada decommissioned to restore fish habitat

A DECISION to decommission a British Columbia dam has observers wondering when – not if – other hydroelectric installations in Canada will be dismantled to give free flowing rivers for fish and ecology of the earth.

The Theodosia River diversion dam, about 140 kilometers northwest of Vancouver, will be the first major dam in Canada decommissioned to restore for fish natural habitat, says Mark Angelo, spokesperson for the Save the Thdosia Coalition and rivers chair of the Outdoor Recreation Council of British Coumbia.

The fact that we are willing to look at taking out dams that have outlived their usefulness sets an important precedent in Canada, says Angelo.

Theodosia dam is the first, but I am sure it won’t be last. The Save the Thoeodosia Coalition is the lone Canadian member organization of the International Rivers Network, which is promoting local and global efforts to decommission/ demolish dams and revive rivers.

The Theodosia River supported annual runs of more than 150,000 salmon before a diversion dam, built-in 1955, redirected 80 percent of the river’s flow.

The decision to remove the dam was made in February 2000 by the B.C. government.