THE Zamzama gas unit of the BHP is located in Dadu district. It has reportedly been meeting 60 per cent gas needs of the entire province of Sindh. Sadly, an area of Dadu, Wahi Pandhi, that is just 28km from the gasfield, is devoid of this basic need. Wahi Pandhi is an area of Johi taluka. Its population is around 40,000 and comprises over 500 villages. The non-availability of the gas facility, on the one hand, forces the local people to cut trees for cooking and, on the other hand, the smoke and ashes of firewood are causing eye and skin diseases.
In this age of science and technology, when all countries in the world are committed to providing basic facilities to their people, control deforestation and reduce carbon emissions, the non-availability of gas to towns like Wahi Pandhi that are close to the gasfields raises many questions about the welfare efforts made by government.
Importantly, the provision of basic facilities to all citizens on an equal basis is the responsibility of the state, and a constitutional right of all. When Zamama gasfield pipelines stretch to far-away areas, the absence of natural gas facility to a city less than 30km is an injustice and violation of the constitutional rights of the citizens of the area.
There is a pressing need that the government of Sindh should take immediate measures to provide gas facility to the area. The provision of this single facility to the area will serve multiple purposes.
First, it will save the area from further deforestation, which is otherwise a challenge to the state. Second, it would reduce the burning of the woods causing emissions of global warming agents like carbon de oxide. Last but not least, it would relieve housewives of eye and skin infections.
INAYATULLAH RUSTAMANI Dadu