Sindh assembly criticizes Irsa for reducing province’s water share – Pakistan
KARACHI: The Sindh Assembly witnessed a stormy session on Monday as the ruling Pakistan People’s Party vehemently condemned the federal government for reducing Sindh’s water share in violation of the Sindh Agreement. 1991 through a strong resolution to which Pakistan Tehreek-i-Insaf, claiming that the PPP created an artificial scarcity by favoring its “blue-eyed waderas”.
The main opposition parties in the provincial assembly – the Grand Democratic Alliance and the Muttahida Qaumi-Pakistan movement – which are coalition partners of the federal government led by the PTI, however, supported the resolution tabled by the minister of government. ‘Irrigation Sohail Anwar Sial.
The House then passed the resolution which read: “This House condemns the decision of the Indus River System Authority (Irsa) to reduce Sindh’s water share by a three-tier formula, which is a violation of the ‘1991 Water Agreement. The province’s agricultural sector contributes at least 23 percent to Pakistan’s GDP. Not only the economy is at stake, but also the livelihoods of many farmers in the province. “
Opposition MQM-P and GDA support resolution against Irsa; PTI blames unjust water distribution by Sindh government for shortages
He added that the Water Allocation Agreement (1991) was an agreement on the sharing of water among the provinces of Pakistan.
“Irsa’s decision to cut off Sindh’s water supply not only violates the 1991 Water Agreement, but also violates the very sanctity of Pakistan’s constitution. Thousands of acres have shrunk due to the unavailability of water downstream from the Kotri Dam. “
The assembly called on Irsa to give Sind its share of water in light of the 1991 Water Accord. “All provinces deserve equitable distribution of water according to the agreed formula. The competent authorities must be held responsible for the refusal of the water share due to Sindh ”, we read.
Speaking on the resolution, Irrigation Minister Siyal said that at Punjab’s suggestion, Irsa was supplying water to Sindh on a three-tiered formula, which he said was a pure violation of the ‘1991 Water Agreement.
He admitted that there was a water shortage in the country, but lamented that the shortages should have been shared equally, while Sindh was forced to face 44% of the shortage and the Punjab was only facing only 9% of the total shortage.
“We don’t want the water from Balochistan or the Punjab, but our (Sindh) fair share,” he said, adding that thousands of hectares had been swallowed up by the sea.
“ Unfair distribution causes water shortage ”
Supporting the resolution, Dr Rafiq Bhanbhan of GDA urged the provincial government to ensure equitable distribution of available water.
“There is a shortage of water, but at the same time, the government of Sindh has not been able to ensure an equitable distribution of the amount of water it currently has,” he added. .
Mangla Sharma of the MQM-P said her party stood with the people of Sindh on the water issue, asking what the Sindh representative in Irsa had done for the province.
The situation took an unpleasant turn when Abdul Aziz of PTI opposed the resolution, saying the province was receiving a fair amount of water but it was an “unfair” distribution that created an artificial water shortage. .
“Sindh has a good amount of water but people have been deprived of basic necessities due to the bad faith of the provincial government,” he added.
His remarks angered the Irrigation Minister, who apparently lost his temper and moved aggressively towards the PTI member, but Law and Parliamentary Affairs Minister Mukesh Kumar Chawla told him obstructed.
“Be ashamed,” Sial shouted at the PTI member, asking him to stop spreading garbage (Bakwaas nahi karo).
Heer Soho from PPP, Mir Allah Bakhsh Talpur, Syed Zulfikar Shah, Aijaz Shah Bukhari, Abdul Bari Pitafi, Ismail Rahu, Taimoor Talpur and Syed Sardar Shah, PTI dissident member Shaharyar Shar and Arif Mustafa Jatoi from GDA also spoke on this occasion.
Later, the resolution was passed unanimously because PTI lawmakers did not say “no” in the vote despite their disapproval in speeches.
Notice of call for attention
While responding to a notice of appeal from Khurram Sher Zaman of the PTI, parliamentary secretary of the local government department Saleem Baloch said the dog bite issue was dangerous across the country, but the Sindh government was “pioneering” By throwing three billion rupees. one year program on a modern approach to controlling the threat.
He said stray dogs across the province would be vaccinated against rabies and neutered to control their population. “Bids have been launched and the contract would be awarded on May 28.”
In addition, he said that veterinary centers will be established in every district of the province and that the chief minister has ordered the release of funds to union councils in case of emergency in this regard.
In response to a call for attention notice given by Mangla Sharma of MQM-P, Minister Chawla said the Safe City project to install 10,000 CCTV cameras would be completed in the coming months.
He said that after its completion in Karachi, the project will be launched in other major cities in the province.
In response to a call for attention notice given by Shah Nawaz Jadoon of PTI regarding the water shortage in Keamari and Sultanabad, the parliamentary secretary said there was an overall shortage of 665 MGD in the city, who only got 550 MGD against a requirement of 1200 MGD.
He said the water supply in Mr Jadoon’s constituency had been affected due to the burst of the Pipri pipeline and it has now been restored.
While responding to written and oral questions from lawmakers during Question Time, Minister of Mines and Minerals Mir Shabbir Ali Bijarani said the Thar Granite Feasibility Project, estimated to cost 50 million rupees, was in progress and a study report had been completed.
To another question, he said that there were eight cement factories in the province and six of them were operational.
The meeting was then adjourned until Tuesday (today).
Posted in Dawn on May 25, 2021