The Water and Power Development Authority (Wapda) has chalked out fresh plans for early completion of a number of dams in the country, Water and Power Minister Naveed Qamar told the Senate on Friday.
The plan will lead to early completion of Mangla dam raising project and the Gomal Zam dam, Qamar said.
Land has been acquired for the 4,500 MW Diamer Bhasha dam and construction work will start soon, the minister said in response to a query by Awami National Party (ANP) leader Haji Adil.
He added that compensation to some of the people affected by the 83.4 MW Kurram Tangi dam has already been paid while construction work on it will start in March 2012, and is expected to be completed in three years.
ANP senator Zahid Khan criticised the government for not starting work on large dams earlier.
Qamar added that appointment of consultant for the 740 MW Munda dam will be made within a week, and work on its construction will start soon.
Apprising the parliament
Qamar said 16 annual reports on different topics have been laid before Parliament while another 12, from 1997 to 2009, are yet to be presented.
The Senate chairman called for presenting reports of the Council of Islamic Ideology (CII), from 1997 onwards, before the house during the next session as well.
Since its inception, the CII has released 80 reports, said Minister for Religious Affairs Khursheed Ahmad Shah while responding to a query.
Baitul Maal allocation
The Senate was informed that out of Rs2 billion allocated for Pakistan Baitul Maal, Rs800 million have been released.
Depending on the actual need and availability of funds, supplementary allocations are also considered positively, said minister for vocational and professional training, Riaz Hussain Pirzada.
Work is under way for the release of remaining budgetary allocation of Rs1.2 billion, he added.
To another question, Pirzada said that a total of 5,430 plots have been allotted under Federal Government Employees Housing Foundation but possession will be handed over once the foundation takes over the land.
Published in The Express Tribune, January 28th, 2012.