KARACHI: Sindh Chief Minister Syed Murad Ali Shah has said that the Sindh government had allowed water for twin cities of Islamabad and Rawalpindi subject to the condition that Karachi would also be given additional 1200 cusecs water for domestic use.
This he said while presiding over a preparatory meeting at New Secretariat in connection with CCI meeting to be held in Islamabad on April 28. The meeting was attended by provincial Minister for law Ziaul Hassan Lanjar, Special Assistant to CM on IPC Taimore Talpur, Chief secretary Rizwan Memon, Principal Secretary to CM Sohail Rajput, Secretary Irrigation Syed Jamal Shah, Secretary Energy Agha Wasif, Secretary IPC department Aijaz Mangi, Secretary Forest Manzoor Shaikh and other concerned officers.
Secretary irrigation Syed Jamal Shah said that presently 1200 cusecs water from River Indus was required for K-IV project (Karachi), the requirement would reach to 1800 cusecs by 2020 and 2400 cusecs by 2025.
The chief minister said that the fresh requirement of water should be shared by all the provinces since Karachi has accommodated people from all the provinces. He added that all the provinces should share this requirement, the way the provincial governments did for carving out the share for Islamabad Rawalpindi.
Discussing the supply og gas to localities in five km radius of gas producing fields, Secretary Energy Agha Wasif said that there are 347 villages located near gas producing fields. The federal government is of the view that the provincial government should share the expenditures. He said that total cost of the gas connection to 347 villages would be Rs3591 million, out of which SSGC would invest Rs747 million and the remaining amount of Rs2844 million would be borne by Sindh government.
On this the chief minister reiterated his earlier stand that in pursuance of Supreme Court judgment and prime minister's directives the federal government should bear total cost of gas pipelines for villages located in five kilometers radius of gas producing fields.
He also said that he would manage to provide gas to other villages which are within the district of gas producing fields.
Talking about short supplies of water in Pat Feeder and Khirthar Canals, the secretary irrigation Jamal Shah said that the claim of Balochistan is not justified as there is no legal provision under 1991 water accord for monetary compensation on account of alleged short supplies of water.
On this the chief minister said that he is ready to start third party monitoring with consensus of both the province. He also presented a report to the chief minister that 83 unauthorised outlets in Guddu Barrage command divert water to Balochistan which is in addition to their share.
National Water Policy: Secretary Irrigation Jamal Shah said that Ministry of Water and Power has revised the draft National Policy on December 2, 2016. Only two points of Sindh irrigation department, "due to water shortage recycling arrangements are essential" have been incorporated in the revised policy.
On this the chief minister said that the important points such as `securing katcha area and economy thereof, preserving of delta area by providing sufficient supplies regularly; rain water disposal arrangement in plains where it could not be disposed of or diverted in the river.
He also suggested another important point for evolving strong administrative machinery with judicial/ policing to assist provincial irrigation departments in proper delivery to have justice with the tail-enders. Water allocations sanctioned for the project have sanctity. These should not be changed. He added that for ensuring tail-enders right new law enabling special `water courts' if needed be established.
The chief minister also said that the affluent coming from Balochistan and Punjab have destroyed lands in Qambar-Shahdadkot and Ghotki dsitricts. This may be put on the agenda that no untreated affluent would be accepted. Therefore, there should a clear policy that the affluent draining down in the gravity to Sindh be treated first.
Secretary Energy Agha Wasif said that Sindh government may impose provincial tax on power plants using `Wind' as natural resource. On this Chief Minister Syed Murad Ali Shah said that the Sindh government may claim `net profit' from the electricity generated through natural gas produced from the well located in Sindh irrespective of power plant location.
Establishment of Fiscal Coordination Committee: The Sindh government accords concurrence to the establishment of fiscal committee. This committee would provide a forum to highlight the unauthorized and arbitrary deductions made by FBR from Sindh government account.
The agenda of the CCI meeting to be held in Islamabad on April 28 includes matter pertaining to Higher Education and other similar bodies, formulation of National Flood Protection Plan IV, import of LNG, sixth population & Housing Census; National Forest Policy 2015; Amendment in the Regulation of Generation, Transmission and Distribution of Electric Power Act 1997; Supply of gas to localities/villages in five kilometer radius og gas producing fields, short supplies of water in Pat Feeder and Khirthar Canals, allocation of 1200 cusecs (650.5 MGD) additional water for Karachi city (K-IV) project and others. - NNI