The ministry of water and power has stated that Bhasha dam will meet the growing power and irrigation needs of the country but does not say how these needs will have grown in the coming 15 years that it will take to build the dam. As to flood control, it will not trap the flood waters of Kabul, Chitral, Swat, Haro and Soan rivers, and being outside the monsoon range it will not trap any part of the 30 maf annual monsoons. Also, north Punjab will not get any water from Bhasha dam or from any other dam on the Indus, resulting in a 50 percent loss in national food production.

It is true that the government has been forced to opt for Bhasha dam because of the mindless opposition to Kalabagh dam, but the people must be given the correct picture to prepare them for the inevitable food inflation and poverty, and other hardships they will have to face in a water starved country. Someone brave and honest also needs to tell them what their folly will cost the country and its 19 crore people in the future.


Lahore, November 3.