ISLAMABAD/Lahore - Lashing out at critics opposing construction of dams in the country, Chief Justice of Pakistan (CJP) Mian Saqib Nisar said Wednesday that they were pursuing ‘someone else’s agenda’.

Hearing a case on the Dadhocha Dam, the CJP recalling a scientist’s remark that the Supreme Court should form its own political party said, “There is no need for anyone to say this. It is a matter of fundamental rights.”

Justice Saqib Nisar said that dams were being constructed for Pakistan’s future generations.

“There would be no compromise on this issue, whether those criticizing the move were well-known scientists or political leaders,” he added.

He claimed that those opposing the construction of dams were working on someone else’s agenda, and the agenda was that ‘dams shouldn’t be built in Pakistan’.

“We won’t let the agenda to not build dams be successful,” the CJP said. “We will build dams under all circumstances.”

The CJP, who was heading a three-judge bench, made the remarks during a case pertaining to land earmarked for the construction of the Dadhocha Dam.

Meanwhile, in the wake of the Supreme Court decision and the government’s resolve for early commencement and timely completion of Diamer-Bhasha and Mohmand dams, Pakistan Water and Power Development Authority yesterday received pre-qualification bids at Wapda House in Lahore from five joint ventures of foreign and local firms through international competitive bidding for the construction of the main dam and appurtenant structures of Diamer-Bhasha Dam.

The pre-qualification bids will be evaluated in accordance with the bid documents and the relevant procurement rules of the Public Procurement Regulatory Authority (PPRA) and the Pakistan Engineering Council (PEC).

Diamer-Bhasha Dam, a multipurpose project, is meant for water storage, flood mitigation and power generation. The project will be constructed across the River Indus about 40 kilometers downstream of Chillas Town. The 272-meter high roller compacted concrete (RCC) dam will have a gross water storage capacity of 8.1 million acres feet (MAF). The project will generate 4,500 megawatts of electricity with annual energy generation of more than 18 billion units of low-cost and environment-friendly power. With the construction of Diamer-Bhasha Dam, the life of Tarbela Dam will rise to another 35 years. It will also have a positive impact on the annual energy generation of the projects in the downstream areas. It is estimated that the annual energy generation of the existing hydel power stations, including Tarbela, Ghazi Barotha, Jinnah and Chashma, will increase by about 2.5 billion units per annum, while annual energy generation of the future hydropower projects, including Dasu, Pattan and Thakot, will also surge by another 7.5 billion units.