Water committee to hold first meeting today

Published September 28, 2021
This file photo shows the Indus River at Kotri downstream almost without water.—INP
This file photo shows the Indus River at Kotri downstream almost without water.—INP

LAHORE: The maiden meeting of the Steering Committee on National Water Policy constituted back in 2018 will be held in Islamabad on Tuesday (today). It will be chaired by Federal Minister for Water Resources Moonis Elahi.

The meeting was to be held on Friday (Sept 24), but had to be rescheduled due to unavailability of some members.

To be attended by secretaries of ministries of water resources, energy, planning and development, and finance, as well as the chairmen of Water and Power Development Authority (Wapda), National Disaster Management Authority and Engineering Council, the meeting will discuss salient features of the National Water Policy, including its draft implementation framework.

A memorandum of understanding for collaboration of the Ministry of Water Resources with relevant provincial departments to ensure effective implementation of the policy will also come under discussion.

The committee had been formed on the instructions of Prime Minister Imran Khan at the first meeting of the National Water Council held on Oct 25, 2018 with the directions to submit within two weeks its recommendations on the proposals presented by the water ministry and Wapda representatives about future investments, particularly enhancing storage capacity, in the water sector.

The steering committee will also review progress on the agenda items of the Oct 25, 2018 meeting. These included preparation of groundwater regulatory framework, trans-boundary water issues, institutional arrangements and setting up of sub-working groups for finalising the water policy implementation framework.

Construction of Diamer-Basha and Mohmand dams, water issues pertaining to Sindh, allocation of 1,200 cusecs additional water to Karachi city (K-IV project), handing over of Rainee Canal and Darawat Dam from Wapda to the Sindh government, implementation status of Nai Gaj Dam and Right Bank Outfall Drain I, II and III, approval of kachhi canal command area’s PC-I, study of environmental flows for eastern rivers in Punjab, etc were also part of agenda of the last meeting.

Likewise, the proposals for increase in share of Gilgit-Baltistan and NFPP-IV from Rs4 billion to Rs6bn, enhancing GB’s share from one per cent to 6.56pc in the flood protection programme, and integrated watershed management in the upland catchments of Azad Jammu and Kashmir will also be reviewed.

Published in Dawn, September 28th, 2021

Opinion

Lull before the storm
Updated 24 Oct 2021

Lull before the storm

It does not take rocket science to figure out why each of the two sides is taking the stand it is.
The larger debate
Updated 23 Oct 2021

The larger debate

The revelations show how the economy promotes inequality.

Editorial

Anti-government rallies
Updated 24 Oct 2021

Anti-government rallies

Banning a party because it can create a public nuisance sets a dangerous precedent which can be repeated to justify future bans.
24 Oct 2021

End of polio?

AFTER a long struggle, the reward is finally in sight. With only a single case of wild poliovirus reported this year...
24 Oct 2021

Heritage work

IT is encouraging that, slowly, projects of heritage conservation and preservation appear to be taking off. These...
A final push
Updated 23 Oct 2021

A final push

PAKISTAN’S hopes of exiting the so-called FATF grey list have been shattered once again. The global money...
23 Oct 2021

Kabul visit

FOREIGN MINISTER Shah Mahmood Qureshi’s flying visit to Kabul on Thursday is the first official high-level...
23 Oct 2021

Baqir’s blooper

THE remarks made by State Bank governor Reza Baqir at a London press conference have hit a raw nerve in Pakistan. In...