ISLAMABAD    -   The country is likely to face 10 to 15 percent water shortage in the upcoming Rabi season starting from October 1st, it is learnt reliably here.

As per the initial forecast of the technical committee that met here Friday, the country is likely to face 10 to 15 percent water shortage in the Rabi season from October 1st to March 31st, official sources told The Nation.

To determine the water availability for the upcoming Rabi season, meeting of the IRSA’s technical committee was held here with Director Operation IRSA Khalid Rana in chair. The meeting was attended by Director Regulation Sindh, Director IWT&R, PID Punjab, SE Pat Feeder Canal Balochistan, Director WAPDA, XEN Hydrology KP and System Analyst IRSA.

However the final decision regarding water availability and losses will be made by IRSA’s advisory committee that will meet next week, the source said. The advisory committee meets with Chairman IRSA in chair while its other members include the provincial member of the authority.

As per the available data the water availability position is better than last year when 11.06 MAF water was stored in the reservoirs during this time of the season while this year there will be around 12 to 13 MAF water available in the dams.

As per the data discussed in the technical committee, there will be 22 to 24 MAF water available in the rivers, while in the reservoirs there will be 12 to 13 MAF water, the source said. The losses during the season is anticipated to be 2 to 3 MAF, said the source.

The Water Accord 1991 empowered IRSA to determine water availability in the country and provincial share twice a year, once for Kharif season and the other for RABI season. 

Rabi season starts from October 1st, while Kharif starts from April 1st. Since Balochistan and Khyber Pakhtunkhwa were exempted from cuts in the share, the shortage in water would be distributed between Sindh and Punjab.

On Friday inflows in River Indus at Tarbela were 81600 cusecs and outflows 85000 cusecs, inflows in Kabul at Nowshera 10400 cusecs and outflows 10400 cusecs, inflows in Jhelum at Mangla 17600 cusecs and outflows 45000 cusecs, inflows in Chenab at Marala 32800 cusecs and Outflows 7000 cusecs.

Inflows in Jinnah Barrage were 123900 cusecs and outflows 116400 cusecs, inflows in Chashma 124400 cusecs and outflows 105000 cusecs, inflows in Taunsa 103100 cusecs and outflows 83700 cusecs, inflows in Panjnad 32900 cusecs and outflows 16700 cusecs, inflows in Guddu 100900 cusecs and outflows 70900 cusecs, inflows in Sukkur 66900 cusecs and outflows 21700 cusecs while inflows in Kotri Barrage were 76100 cusecs and outflows 61900 cusecs.

Currently Tarbela Dam against its minimum operating level of 1392 feet, is 1548.65 feet. The maximum conservation level of the dam is 1550 feet.

Mangla against its minimum operating level of 1050 feet is presently at 1234.20 feet, maximum conservation level 1242 is feet. Chashma against minimum operating level of 638.15 feet is presently at 646.30 feet, maximum conservation level of the reservoir is 649 feet.