LAHORE-While Punjab Assemblys resolution in favour of Kalabagh Dam is welcome, but nothing tangible will come out of it unless efforts are made at the national level to build consensus over the issue. The Assembly resolution and the ensuing pro-KBD speeches by legislators in the House on Wednesday would be of no use if other provinces continue their opposition to this project of national importance. Building a national consensus over KBD is the main issue, but there seems no such move at the Federal level at the moment. Taking part in Assembly debate on flood situation on Wednesday, Punjab Senior Minister, Raja Riaz rightly urged the Federal government to play its role to build water reservoirs including KBD to avoid devastation caused by floods and to meet countrys energy and agriculture needs. 'We are an unfortunate nation to have wasted flood water worth billions of dollars because we have no water reservoirs, he remarked. Talking to the media outside Punjab Assembly, he also asked Punjab Governor Salman Taseer to convince the Federal government to pave the way for construction of KBD. He was of the view that the issue must be taken up now, and if there was no consensus, the government should look for other options. Opposition leader Ch Zaheer also stressed the need for KBD during debate on flood situation. While it is encouraging to see that Punjab lawmakers have realised urgency of water reservoirs and have urged the Federal government to take immediate steps for amicable settlement of the dispute and they are expected to take a step further and ask their respective central leaders to remove misgivings of people in Sindh and other provinces over the issue. It is right time that Federal government should have initiated debate among the stakeholders to remove their misgivings about the project. Gilani believes that Council of Common Interests was the right forum to address this issue, but his reluctance to convene its meeting shows lack of seriousness on top leaderships part to tackle the problem. It is worrisome that President Zardari is keeping mum over the KBD. To many, he is the right person to convince leaders of his party in Sindh to give up their opposition to the dam. Likewise, the top leadership of PML-N and PML-Q can talk to Sindhi nationalists and win their support by giving them concrete guarantees against their apprehensions. Services of Pir of Pagaro may also be sought in this regard. In order to develop political consensus, it is desirable that opponents of the dam should be convinced by neutral technical experts. Punjab Governor Salman Taseer is right when he says that KBD is a technical issue which has been made a political one by the vested interests. To move ahead in this direction, a meeting of technical experts from the four provinces may be convened to discuss technical aspects of the problem. They should in turn convince the opponents in their respective provinces. The KBD may then be designed keeping in view recommendations of these experts enjoying trust of all the stakeholders.