Underground water drops to ‘alarming level’

Wasa MD warns if urgent steps not taken Quetta will turn into a desert within a few years

Mohammad Zafar October 13, 2018
A view of the depleting water level in the Sohrab area of Balochistan. PHOTO: FILE

QUETTA: Water and Sanitation Authority (Wasa) Managing Director Wali Muhammad Barrech has warned that Quetta will turn into a desert within a few years if urgent steps are not taken to stop the declining underground water level.

“The underground water level has dropped to 1,000 feet [from the earlier 300 feet],” said the Wasa MD while addressing a press conference on Friday.

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Barrech said, “Up to 30 major tube wells in Quetta have dried up due to lack of rainfall. The provincial government must call an emergency huddle over the burgeoning water shortage otherwise Quetta will turn into a desert within a few years.”

Sharing details of financial crisis in his department, he said, “The consumers have to pay Rs400 million in dues. We have been providing 4.5 million gallons to the city on a daily basis while the total need of the city has reached 6.5 million gallons.”

He urged the citizens to pay their dues to end the financial woes of Wasa.

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“More than 275 non-functional tube wells in Quetta’s Chiltan and Zarghoon towns have started functioning. We have initiated crackdown against illegal water connections across the city,” said Barrech. “Ninety-seven per cent of the tube wells are functioning to meet the water requirement of the citizens. We have 91,000 registered connections, which will be increased to 150,000.”

“The citizens do not pay their monthly water bill of Rs125, which is the main reason they have to go to the tanker mafia,” he said, adding that efforts were under way to install 30 more tube wells in the city.
He said, “We have assured the district administration of full action against illegal connections.”


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