PBIF demands construction of new dams promptly

President of Pakistan Businessmen and Intellectuals Forum (PBIF) Mian Zahid Hussain proposed that small dams should be preferably built in those areas in Sindh and Balochistan that were facing drought that caused deleterious effects on lives of masses, livestock and agriculture.

“Pakistan cannot afford delay in the construction of new dams any more, he said in a statement adding that the demand for water continued to increase hence all needed to bury their differences on mega dams also. He urged that construction of hundreds of mini dams should be initiated without any delay lest country would turn into a desert.

He said Pakistan was capable to store only 7% of its water resources and that could meet the water requirements of the country for only 30 days. He stressed on the need to enhance the storage capacity to 40% of the total water resources.

“Collective storage capacity in Tarbela, Mangla and Chashma will be reduced by 37 percent and that will be a nightmare because more than 80 percent of the total crops are irrigated by rivers and canals,” he said adding that only 15% crops were irrigated by rains water and a small portion through groundwater.

He cited that in past 24 small dams were planned and completed in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, 60 were planned in Balochistan and half were completed, 34 were planned in Punjab and 3 were completed and 4 were planned in Sindh and none was completed.

Mian Zahid said that 70% of the population was linked to agriculture and they need enhanced water-storage without which food security could not be guaranteed.