Despite actively campaigning for the construction of dams to avert water shortage in Pakistan, the Federal government has reduced budget allocation for dams.
The previous government had allocated Rs23.68 billion for the construction of Diamer Bhasha dam which has been reduced to Rs16 billion in the new budget.
This is Rs7 billion less than the previous budget allocation.
The government has allocated only Rs69,678.359 million for various ongoing and new water resources projects under Public Sector Development Programme (PSDP) for next fiscal year 2019-20.
According to the budgetary documents, an amount of Rs61,487.089 million has been earmarked for ongoing water schemes while Rs8,191.270 million for 30 new schemes in the PSDP 2019-20.
For ongoing water sector projects, a sum of Rs16,000 million has been earmarked for Diamer Bashadam, Rs15,000 for Mohmand dam, Rs6604.
Some 803 million for Kachhi Canal Project, Rs4,000 million for Diamer Basha dam land acquisition and resettlement.
Moreover, Rs1065.825 million have been allocated for remedial measures to control water logging (Muzaffargarh), Rs1,000 million for construction of 100 dams in Balochistan, Rs1,100 million for construction of Basool dam, Rs1,500 million for Balochistan Effluent Disposal into RBOD-I, Rs800million for Naulong storage dam and Rs600 million for raising of Baran dam (Bannu).
For new schemes, Rs1,500 million has been specified for Kachhi Canal Project (remaining work), Rs1,000 million each for construction of Winder dam and rehabilitation of Kas Umar Khan Barrage, Rs800 million for increasing storage capacity of Tanda Dam and Rs300 million for Management of Mithawan Hill Torrent.—INP