I dare speak


The country is facing severe shortage of electricity and gas, but the federal and provincial governments have done nothing in the past five years except shifting blame to their predecessor governments. Since, LHC has ordered the federal government to construct KBD, I dare express my views.
A cursory look at the fifth five year plan reveals that 135 million were earmarked for KBD feasibility report and work was to commence in the sixth plan and completed in 1993. Along with feasibility report a WAPDA colony was set up for employees at the proposed site. In the seventh plan (page 195) there is only mention of project in few words which read “Imperative of KBD.” Eighth plan (page 230) approved by Benazir Bhutto, manifest words “work on KBD, Ghazi Brotha, and Bhasha at various stages of preparation.”
When all engineers under chairmanship of Nasir-ul-Mulk unanimously agreed that the project was viable and vital, politicians from KP and Sindh made hue and cry against it. While KP leaders objected on the basis of fears of floods in many regions of KP, Sindhi politicians were afraid that their province would turn into desert. Consequently, although design of the dam was revised and height reduced to address reservations of political leaders of KP who refused to budge an in their stance, no serious efforts seem to have been made to allay the fears of Sindh. During the two PML governments Nov. -1990 to Apr. -1993 and 8-2-97 to 2-10-97, Mehtab Abbasi and Sabir Shah were Chief ministers respectively of KP, but failed to pass a resolution in favour of KBD. The PML government stumbled in evolving consensus about this project and now is dragging judiciary in this controversial game.
The LHC asked the federal government to construct the KBD as per recommendation of CCI. This body is meant only for solution of water disputes between provinces and not to approve any project. In fact it is the ECNC that enjoys power to approve any mega project and ask for implementation.
Though I am not averse to idea of building KBD of, yet if its construction creates any dissension among federating units the prudent way is to abandon it and concentrate on completion of Bhasha dam and other viable projects. We should stop escalating to a failed cause and focus our attention, resources and energy of developing upstream dams.


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