Sindh has been facing a shortage of water and complaining of it. Delta is dying and sea has submerged the land – instead of solving water issue, Indus River System Authority [IRSA] in October, 2019 had given the go-ahead to develop 25 mega water power plant to [Private] Limited on Chashma-Jhelum (CJ) Link Canal. IRSA is comprised of five members, four provinces and fifth federal, it has no an authority to approve of project.
Nonetheless, Chashma-Jhelum (CJ) Link Canal is non-perennial canal that is to be filled in flood season – now – they intend to turn it into perennial.
CJ Link canal is reported to be taken Sindh’s share. Sindh government has been protesting against CJ Link canal – adopted resolution in Sindh Assembly against it.
Federal government has neither listened to what Sindh says, nor does federal government inquire into why IRSA approved of.
On 30th November, 2019, federal standing committee water resources, committee consists of 20 members held a meeting on CJ canal – majority of members from PMLN and PTI that belonged to Punjab, were on same page for supporting a controversial project CJ Link canal, despite Sindh government’s concerns over CJ Link canal.
Punjab has its share and has a right to build CJ canal said members at federal standing committee water resources. Whereas, Chief Minister Sindh Murad Ali Shah is reported to have said; “Chashma-Jhelum (CJ) Link canal is not a perennial canal and it has no allocation in the 1991 water accord how can a hydropower plant be set up there.” CJ canal to be open throughout a year and Sindh’s share would be taken.
Wonder, how some members of federal committee are supporting which CJ canal is controversial.
Prime Minister Imran Khan is to hold a meeting Council of Common Interests (CCI) on 11th December, 2019 and Sindh government to be taken CJ canal issue. The way federal government has ignored Sindh’s concerns over CJ canal since October, 2019. How will the federal government listen to Sindh government on 11th December, 2019?
CJ canal is controversial, if the federal still insists on building a hydropower plant then the project can be built on other sites – for instance – one of committee members suggested NARA canal in Sindh.
So far – PMLN and PTI are on the same page against Sindh’s concerns. Federal political parties PMLN and PTI should not ignore concern of Sindh and must avoid encouraging controversial projects.
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