LAHORE - This massive increase in the electricity prices in the first year of the newly-elected government could not resolve the problem of load-shedding despite the fact that the prior to elections, the government had promised that it would resolve the electricity problem in the country.
Construction of the large dams, including the KBD, is the only solution to provide electricity at very nominal cost, as presently, electricity is almost biggest contributor of the CIP inflation due to power generation through thermal means, observed IEP Lahore centre chairman Capt (r) Syed Khalid Sajjad. Quoting the State Bank’s Inflation Monitor (June 2014), he said that due to declining hydal power generation and absence of big water reservoirs, the electricity contribution to CPI rises to 15.82 per cent in June 2014 which was zero in June 2013, country is completely depending on thermal power source.
While the contribution in CPI has been rising, the electricity theft has risen and recovery has significantly dropped despite increased prices of this commodity.
He said that the non-availability of water and power is the biggest threat for any nation or country and Pakistan is also not an exception in this regard. Unfortunately our incompetent and corrupt governments do not seem to think beyond their own welfare rather than building the country and the nation. He made it clear that the present planning of mini power projects could not resolve the mega challenges of power shortage gifted by the PPP-government due to lack of hydel power. “As for as coal energy is concerned, it is not clean like hydel energy while coal energy is also five times expensive as compared to hydel energy. Moreover, Kalabagh Dam can store 70 days water for a year to serve our agriculture needs while wind or solar energy and coal energy do not produce water at all.” The IEP Lahore chief said that after the general election, the nation was holding its breath to see what action PML (N) will take to control the energy crisis.
He suggested the government to forge a consensus on the building of Kalabagh Dam among all the province of Pakistan by holding a referendum under the judiciary. “The Institution of Engineers Pakistan, along with the Lahore Chamber of Commerce and Industry, offers its services free of cost to the government under the leadership of Engineer Shamsul Mullk, ex-CM KP and ex-chairman WAPDA to help and assist the govt.
“We solemnly affirm that we can design, construct, arrange financial support independently. In case work on KBD is not ordered immediately by our government our future shall not be different from Ethopia.
“We are extremely unfortunate as the advice of the expertise is not at all considered worthwhile against their own political thinking and personal gains.