ISLAMABAD-As acute water shortage in G-13 and adjoining sectors aggravates, a war of words broke out on Saturday between former Minister for Finance Assad Umar and Mayor Metropolitan Corporation Islamabad Skeikh Ansar Aziz, blaming each other for the crises.

“Mayor MCI is entirely responsible for the prevailing water crises in G-13 and adjoining areas”, Umar, sitting PTI MNA from NA-54 Islamabad-111 said while speaking to The Nation on phone from Karachi, adding that he would return to the capital on Monday and would take up the issue with the relevant authorities.

On the other hand, Mayor MCI Skeikh Ansar Aziz while rejecting the allegations sought resignation from Assad Umar for his failure to resolve the public issue in his constituency instead of doing politics on such a distressing fundamental issue.

Ansar Aziz lamented Assad Umar for his double standards, saying that when he was in opposition as an MNA during the PML-N government, he used to blame the then government for bad governance but now he was fleeing from the residents of his constituency. “He should tender his resignation forthwith for his failure to address the fundamental public issue”, Ansar quipped.

MCI Mayor went on to say that Assad Umar and other PTI MNAs from Islamabad failed to secure from their government rightful share for Islamabad in Public Sector Development Programme (PSDP) unveiled in the national budget for the fiscal year 2019-2020. He pointed out that water shortage was serious problem in Islamabad and the PTI MNAs including Asad Umar should resign from their seats for not getting a penny to address the issue in the capital city.

“They are playing politics because of the fact that we have been elected from the PML-N platform”, the Mayor said, alleging that Asad Umar and two other PTI MNAs from Islamabad were using office of the chairman of CDA. He said that MCI had no funds for the past six months. On water crises in G-13 and G-14 sectors, the MCI mayor said that both the residential sectors had been developed by Federal Government Employees Housing Foundation, a subsidiary of Ministry of Housing and Works, and these two sectors had not been handed over to Capital Development Authority (CDA) so far. On the other hand, a survey done by this correspondent of water supply system in G-13 sector revealed that 60 percent of the total water acquired through Khanpur Dam was being consumed on construction of luxury apartments. However, sources in the Housing Foundation rejected these notions, saying that mega housing project had own tube wells for water for construction purposes.

They said that Federal Minister for Housing and Works Chauhdry Tariq Bashir Cheema, the lone minister in the Federal Cabinet from PML-Q, has standing instructions to the project director for using water for the construction of these luxury apartments from their own tube wells.

On prevailing acute water shortage in G-13, sources said that it was because of phenomenal decrease of underground water level in their tube wells.

As a quick solution, they advised the high-ups to take due share of water from Rawalpindi Cantonment Board from the Khanpur Dam water supply scheme of which G-13 and G-14 sectors are also part but the Cantonment authorities are taking wholesome water from Khanpur Dam and not giving due share to the G-13 and G-14 sectors.

On the other hand, some residents of G-13 put the entire blame on the Housing Foundation which they alleged had committed serious mistakes while laying water supply lines in the sector and these residents were denied their due right of drinking water despite making payments of millions of rupees to the Housing Foundation.