The scribe is a staunch supporter of the construction of Kalabagh Dam at the earliest and firmly also believes if this direly needed major storage facility is not developed then all of us or our future generations will die en masse for want of thirst as the experts are sternly warning about Pakistan may be facing an acute drought-like situation as early as by 2025 (God-forbid).

It is good to note that multi-purpose but politically criticized and condemned Kalabagh Dam although it was scrapped by PPP’s Federal Water and Power Minister Raja Pervaiz Ashraf soon after PPP came into power in 2013 and also dropped from all official documents.

During the last couple of days, it is quite heartening that Kalabagh Dam has been talked about at the highest judicial forum. Chief Justice of Pakistan Justice Mian Saqib Nisar while hearing a sou motu notice on the water crisis in Islamabad Thursday and called upon the political leadership to forge consensus on the Kalabagh dam to ensure a steady supply of water to all parts of the country throughout the year.

Only a day earlier, according to the reports in the media, WAPDA Chairman Lt General ® Muzammil Hussain while giving an extensive briefing to a Senate body also in Islamabad duly stressed the importance of the Kalabagh dam but subjecting its construction only after national consensus saying, presently, country can store water for 30 days due to lack of adequate storage facility as compared to 170 days capacity of India. He even suggested giving the KB dam operational and management to Sindh would allay province’s concern of going dry.

Multi-trillion dollars question which this scribe wants to ask political leadership of the country since national consensus remains ever-elusive as everyone is interested more in petty, vested political and regional interests than national interests of the nation and the country over and above everything else, why not import ever elusive national consensus over Kalabagh dam from IMF, World Bank or any other donor agency instead of continuing borrowing billions of dollars.

M.Z. RIFAT,

Lahore, June 22.