Water Resources Federal Minister Syed Ali Zafar visited WAPDA House on 26th June. WAPDA Chairman Lt Gen Muzammil Hussain (R) briefed the Minister about the issues of water and hydropower sectors in the country. The Minister was also apprised of WAPDA projects, particularly Diamer Basha Dam and Mohmand Dam.
Dilating upon the efforts made by WAPDA to cope with the increasing needs of water and electricity, the Chairman said that WAPDA succeeded in completing as many as for four mega projects from August 2017 onwards to irrigate 72, 000 acres of barren land in Dera Bugti, Balochistan and add 2487 MW of hydel electricity to the National Grid. These projects included Phase 1 of Kachhi Canal, Golen Gol, Tarbela 4th Extension and Neelum Jhelum Hydropower Project. Stage 1 of Kurram Tangi Dam Project is scheduled to be completed in 2020, while the 2160 MW – Stage 1 of Dasu Hydropower Project is likely to start electricity generation by 2023.
The Minister was further briefed that construction work on Diamer Basha Dam Project and Mohmand Dam will be started in fiscal year 2018-19.The gigantic Diamer Basha Dam Project has a gross water storage capacity of 8.1 MAF and power generation capacity of 4500 MW. Likewise Mohmand Dam Hydropower Project will store 1.2 MAF water and generate 800 MW electricity. Both projects are vital to attain water and energy security in the country, therefore, all stakeholders should play their due role in initiation and timely completion of these projects. The 1410 MW- Tarbela 5th Extension, the 2160 MW-Stage II of Dasu, the 7100 MW-Bunji and the Stage II of multipurpose Kurram Tangi Dam among the ready-for-construction projects.
Speaking on the occasion, Water Resources Minister expressed satisfaction over the measures being taken by WAPDA to implement its projects in water and hydropower sectors. He was of the view that concerted efforts are required both at federal and provincial levels to steer the country out of the impending water crisis.