Declining water storage capacity

A news item in a Urdu daily newspaper reveals that the water storage in the Tarbella dam reservoir has reached dead level. Indus River System Authority (IRSA) has attributed it to delay in melting of snow in the catchment areas and increase in the quantum of downstream flow to the Sindh province. The PPP government in the province on the one hand complain every of getting less water than its share allocated under the Water Apportionment Accord of 1991 but on the other hand the party leadership oppose tooth and an nail the construction of big dams on the River Indus.

The delay in the construction of big dams and storages after the completion of Tarbella, Mangla and Warsak dams no new dam has been built over the past 42 years. As a result water resources of $21 billion are thrown into the sea every year by making politically controversial construction of Kalabagh dam downstream Tarbella on the River Indus. Consequently, not only the water released downward from this dam is wasted but thousand of cusecs of water from the River Lunda, its tributaries and River Swat that enter Indus at Khairabad is also not utilised. Contract for the construction of Mohamand dam on the River Sawat has been awarded and ground breaking done. Hopefully, the political leaders who oppose the construction of Kalabagh dam will give chance to reasons and towards collective thinking of nation building to address the looming threat of water scarcity.