Wapda chairman comes up with creative idea

ISLAMABAD: Terming Sindh’s concerns on Kalabagh dam genuine, Chairman Water and Power Development Authority (Wapda), Lt-General Muzammal Hussain (retired) proposed on Tuesday that if a consensus evolves on the dam within political forces, then it should be built but its operation should be handed over to Sindh aimed at addressing its concerns.

He made these comments before the Senate Standing Committee on Water Resources, days before the Supreme Court (SC) would deliberate on the Kalabagh dam issue. The meeting was presided over by Senator Shamim Afridi.

Talking about long-term hydropower projects, Chairman Wapda said that Kalabagh dam should be constructed if provinces show their consent, adding that consensus is necessary prior to taking any initiative on it. He cited a report by Qamar Zaman Shah in which a couple of recommendations were made: (i) there should not be any link canal on right or left side of the reservoir; (ii) there should be authentic statistics of sufficient water availability to fill the reservoir as river Kabul, river Swat and Sindh residual will fall in the dam; and (iii) Management and O&M of the dam should be handed over to Sindh.

Published in Business Recorder, 7th June, 2018