QUETTA: After at least 12 dams in the province were breached as a result of flash floods caused by heavy rains, the Balochistan government on Friday dispelled the impression that sub-standard construction and alleged corruption was the reason for the breaches.

Speaking at a press conference along with provincial ministers Syed Ehsan Shah, Mir Naseebullah Khan and Advisor to Chief Minister on Home and Tribal Affairs Mir Ziaullah Langove, Minister for Irrigation Muhammad Khan Lehri said that the 12 dams, which gave way in different areas of the province, were not poorly constructed.

He added that the damage was caused due to the inflow of more water than their capacity, adding that repair work on these dams would be expedited.

Mr Lehri said that an inspection team had been tasked with ascertaining the reasons behind the dams’ breaking, as well as to assess damage to other dams in the province. He added that 16 bridges were also washed away, cutting off road communications between Balochistan and other provinces.

“We are making all out efforts to restore traffic on all highways and link roads as soon as possible,” he said.

Balochistan has received “500 per cent more rains than average” which resulted in massive destruction in the province, including loss of human lives, he said.

Addressing the press conference, Balochistan Health Minister Syed Ehsan Shah said the health department was providing all possible facilities to flood victims.

He added that medical camps have been set up in these areas, while medicines, including anti-snake venom serums and vaccines for cholera and other diseases have also been dispatched. He said a team of doctors was sent to Zhob after the health department received information of a cholera outbreak in the area.

Education Minister Nasebullah Khan and Advisor to CM Mir Ziaullah Langove said the government was providing all out help to the affected people.

“Rescue and relief operation will continue in all affected areas, while rehabilitation work would be launched soon across the province,” they said.

Replying to statements by former Chief Minister Jam Kamal about ignoring Lasbela district, the ministers said that all machinery and officials were present in the district and relief and rescue operations were underway.

Published in Dawn, August 6th, 2022

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