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Khattak hints at formulation of water policy

September 26, 2017

PESHAWAR: Chief Minister Pervez Khattak has said that Khyber Pakhtunkhwa government formulate its own water policy.

Addressing a ceremony here on Monday, he said that the policy would help to better manage and preserve water resources of the province. The ceremony was organised by Hisaar Foundation to launch its recommendations for Pakistan’s Water Policy Framework.

The foundation urged Khyber Pakhutnkhwa government to formulate and adopt a water policy to encourage rational use of water in the province.

Speaking on the occasion, Hisaar Foundation convener Simi Kamal said that the framework was prepared and already launched at federal level by the Karachi-based think tank comprising volunteers as experts from all over the country.

Says policy will help in better management of water resources

She said that they were a group of volunteers, who as citizens, could only raise voice for the rational use of water in the country and urge governments to consider their recommendations.

Chief Minister Pervez Khattak, who was chief guest on the occasion, agreed to the idea to start work on a provincial water policy with the consultation of the think tank.

He said that Khyber Pakhtunkhwa government was grappling with so many problems, however, it would be in the forefront to work on formulation of a water policy to better manage and preserve water resources of the province.

Provincial Minister for Water and Power Atif Khan also stressed the need for formulation of a water policy in the province, faced with irrational use of water for irrigation and domestic use.

He said that Khyber Pakhtunkhwa would be the first province of the country to adopt a water policy.

Hisaar Foundation, a foundation for water, food and livelihood security, in its recommendations mentions that Pakistan’s economy is water economy.

It says that 60 per cent of the population is directly engaged in agriculture and livestock and 80 per cent export of the country is based on these sectors.

It says that approximately 95 per cent of the surface water and almost all fresh groundwater in the country is currently used in agriculture. That’s why the country needs a long term plan for its water requirements and federal and provincial government need to have a roadmap, it added.

Experts called for utilising the water resources to generate electricity keeping in view rational use of water and protecting rivers from contamination.

Published in Dawn, September 26th, 2017