Caretaker Chief Minister Justice (Retd) Dost Muhammad Khan, while presiding over a meeting of high officials of agriculture and irrigation departments underscored the need for the completion of on going small dam projects. He emphasized long term planning for water conservation projects that are of low cost and provide more benefits. He said these projects should have shorter completion periods and stressed application of modern technology and methods in water usage and farming.
In all 37 small dams had been approved by both federal and Khyber Pukhtunkhwa (KP) government but the implementation of most of them hit snags due non-provision of funds and capacity issue of the departments responsible for the execution of these projects. Central Development Party (CDWP) of the federal government approved the construction20 small dams in KP with a cost of R.s. 970 million on January 15, 2016. Likewise, the previous provincial government decided on 3rd November 2017 to construct 17 small dams in different districts of the province to cater to water needs of agriculture sector, drinking water and providing inexpensive electricity to the people. However, the provincial government could not start the construction work on these dams barring a few exceptions.
Construction of two small dams Gadwalian dam in Haripur and Jalzai dam in Noshera districts have been started and are in the advanced stage of completion. The PTI government included one small dam each in Nowshera and Karak districts in the ADP of 2015-16. But the implementation process of Mairabi and Jaroba dams did not see light of day. Latamber small dam project in Karak district also met the same fate.
There are a number of feasible sites of small dams in southern districts of Kohat, Karak , bannu and Tank for storing the water of flash floods in rains of spring season and monsoon rain spell but attention is yet to be given for their planning and execution. Similarly, there are dozens of feasible sites of small dams in the districts of Charsadda, Mardan, Sawabi, Swat and Dir. The issue is the lack of interest of ruling political leadership in water resource conservation methods.