Kalabagh dam has been politicised very badly i.e. the public has been made to believe by the top leadership that the dam will be harmful to the interest of KPK Sindh and even Balochistan.

The Pathans and the Sindhis are even prepared to die for it. That is why Begum Nasim Wali said to Gen Zahid Ali Akbar that “if we stop opposing Kalabagh dam it will be our political death”.

Musharraf also had to back down when threatened that his PML-Q would not get even one vote in Sindh if he went ahead with Kalabagh dam. Even the present leadership of ANP and PPP is helpless against the violent public sentiment. Yusuf Raza Gilani first said in 2010 that if Kalabagh dam had been there, the flood havoc would have been much less, but he soon had to eat his words in face of public outrage. To my mind unless we are able to persuade the people of KPK and Sindh that Kalabagh dam will not do all those bad things which they have been told, there will be no hope for Kalabagh dam. More than enough data is available with us to be able to counter the baseless and unfounded apprehensions.

However if we can’t do that then we might as well wait until things get so bad (which they will) that KPK and Sindh will themselves ask for Kalabagh dam to be built.


Lahore, December 3.