After the complete dismissal of the Saaf Paani Project due to the number of inquiries launched against it, the government of Punjab has launched a Punjab Aab-e-Pak Authority. Under this initiative, the government aims to establish filtration plants across the province to ensure that residents drink clean water. This initiative will also be extended to jails, hospitals, and universities. This is being done to ensure that everyone has clean drinking water, which is becoming a problem in the province due to a large amount of arsenic present in the water. This is resulting in a number of water-borne diseases, especially in children.

While it is a commendable move by the government because a necessity as basic as this should be readily available, the question that arises is that the previous government had taken a similar initiative. A lot of money was also invested in the initiative, only to be discarded by the new government. This sets the precedent that successive governments can forgo initiatives of the previous government to establish projects in their name. This not only wastes capital but also a lot of time which can be invested in actual developmental work.

Another problem with the initiative is that the Punjab Governor Chaudhry Sarwar has been made the patron-in-chief of the initiative. This is out of bounds of his legal jurisdiction, as the law only allows him a role as the chancellor of universities in the province. PML-N MPA Azma Bukhari said she would challenge the creation of the authority in Punjab with federation’s representative governor as its patron-in-chief. Legal amendments would be required to justify this move and overlooking it would mean that constitutional clauses are being rigorously overlooked, which is not the right precedent to be set in the current times. Any elected government is legally required to abide by the Constitution of the state and the government must be mindful of such mistakes.