Ishaque Dar has said that Kalabagh dam cannot be built at the cost of federation’s vitality. How is federation’s vitality being served by leaving 30 million acres barren, 80 percent in Sindh, for the next 15 years until Bhasha dam is commissioned? Is the shortage of water not impacting adversely on federation’s vitality in terms of food inflation, livelihood of the rural population, not to mention the stunted national economy? Will not federation’s vitality be violated if Sindh forces IRSA to shut down CJ and TP link canals, as it will, if not this year then next year, leading to water wars. Can federation’s vitality afford the loss of $2 billion per annum that each MAF can inject into the economy ie $12 billion per year over the last 20 years, a total of $240 billion?
Instead of saying that the dam will not be built without developing consensus on it, it should be said that all efforts will be made to develop that consensus. That the flow in the Indus will not decrease as wrongly feared, that Sindh will get the same amount of water as Punjab will, Punjab having offered to reduce its share, under the Water Accord of 1991, in order to increase Sindh’s share in all future dams. With three votes in IRSA Sindh should have nothing to fear regarding river water distribution? People need to be told of the aforementioned damages the country is suffering because of not building dams and the immense benefits that will accrue if a mega dam is built at the earliest.
Lahore, June 30.