Provinces’ consensus on Kalabagh Dam imperative: minister


Provincial Irrigation Minister Amanat Ullah Shadi Khel told the Punjab Assembly on Wednesday that nine mini dams were under construction in various districts which would be completed by 2018.

“Punjab favours the Kalabagh Dam but a consensus among other provinces in this regard is essential”, he added.

He was answering questions by lawmakers during a question-answer session in the assembly.

The minister said that the government was well-aware of the future demand of water and added that a hefty amount was being spent for the construction of water reservoirs across the province.

He said that the feasibility report of six dams was being prepared under the annual development program. “The construction of these dams will be started next year,” he said.

Replying to a question by Jamat e Islami Parliamentary Secretary Dr Wasim Akhtar, the minister said that all provinces would benefit from the construction of Kalabagh Dam.

Parliamentary Secretary for Finance Rana Babar Hussain told the house that the Bank of Punjab had written off 186 loans worth Rs 1,589.336 million from July 1, 2008, to June 30, 2016.

Responding to a question by MPA Muhammad Hassan Riaz, he said that a committee had already been constituted for raising the salaries of technical and non-technical staff of schools and after its recommendations pay structure would be revised.

He said that some 14 marriage halls were registered in Sheikhupura district while action against 15 unregistered marriage halls was underway.

The parliamentary secretary, in reply to another question by Chaudhry Ashraf Ansari, maintained that the government obtained loans from various foreign financial institutions for development schemes.