KARACHI: The first phase of the K-IV water project will be completed this year while work on the second phase will also be started soon.
Governor Mohammad Zubair said this while meeting a three-member delegation of Hisaar Foundation, comprising Ashraf Kapadia, Simi Kamal and Zohair Ashir, at Governor House on Thursday. Another scheme for the supply of potable water to the city had been included in the development package for Karachi, the governor told the delegation.
"We must all join hands for improving access to water for the poor and landless by maximising efficiency of water use, financing urban and rural water economies, safeguarding the Indus basin, its aquifers and its infrastructure, improving water governance and management of water institutions, and building a base for science, technology and social aspects of water," Zubair asserted.
There was an urgent need to create awareness about utilising water with prudence, the governor said. He added that farmers must also be guided and trained to use irrigation water according to the requirements of soil and avoid overusing water as it wasted a precious resource.
Need for formal water policy at national level stressed
Zubair urged the need for taking immediate steps for ensuring water security. He was of the view that youths should be trained in techniques for conserving and managing water. People needed direction regarding water-related issues, the governor said, adding that conservation of water was an issue pertaining to the whole country and it required a national plan of action for which all regions of the country needed to collaborate.
During the meeting some key issues related to water security were highlighted that needed immediate attention. They included increasing water pollution, water waste, over-utilisation of groundwater and seawater intrusion.
The governor appreciated the national water policy draft prepared by the Hisaar Foundation, calling it a helpful document as it provided ways to ensure effective use of water and preserving the same for our next generations. Kamal briefed Zubair about salient features of the proposed policy. She opined that water security was an urgent issue and it needed immediate action so that future generations could have sufficient water for their needs.
Tackling water security: Who owns the right to groundwater?
The government assigns great importance to safe drinking water, sanitation, agriculture, and rural and urban development, Zubair said, adding that cooperation between provincial governments and local bodies was needed for the effective management of water resources.