The provincial cabinet of Sindh has taken several important decisions regarding administrative issues of the province during a meeting chaired by the Chief Minister Syed Murad Ali Shah on Tuesday. The Cabinet approved long demanded water act, devolution of Sindh Building Control Authority to the divisional level, ratification of Pak Army deployment in support of civil administration etc.
The local government department presented Sindh Water act 2020 in the cabinet. The water act calls for establishment of Sindh water Resource Commission and Sindh Water Services regulatory Authority (SWSRA). The Sindh water Resource Commission would be headed by the chief minister and will oversee the water conservation, redistribution, augmentation of water resources, allocation of water resources for domestic, agricultural, ecological, industrial, or other purposes. It will also maintain, improve, and develop wildlife and fisheries in water bodies. The Sindh Water Services regulatory Authority (SWSRA) will manage the functions of water service providers, sewerage services providers and have the powers to approve, determine or revise tariffs for water and sewerage service providers in the province.
The availability of clean water had been a serious problem for the residents of Sindh province both urban and rural areas as well as for the local and provincial government over the recent decades. The urban areas were facing shortage of water and provision of contaminated and polluted water whereas Rural areas complaint of non-availability and scarcity of water in the far-flung deserts of Sindh such as Tharparker, Umer Kot and Methi. There were continuous calls to Sindh Province to manage its water resources by maintaining its minimum environmental flow of water for proper functioning and health of its water bodies such as the Indus Delta mangroves and coastal wetlands. Similarly, for proper provision of water at gross route level, efficient billing, repair, and maintenance of water lanes demands a dedicated department to manage the growing needs.
In fact, it was the first step, Sindh government needs to fully implement the Water Act in the province to end the sufferings and miseries of the people of the province. There are powerful mafias involved in making money out of the sufferings of the people and these mafias would create problems for the government to stall its Public centered initiative, which needs to be handle with the iron hand.