‘Repair of Sukkur Barrage gates to be completed ahead of floods’

Ex federal secretary opposes reinstallation of same damaged gates after repair

Z Ali June 23, 2024
Originally known as Lloyd Barrage, it was considered an engineering marvel when completed in 1932, capable of discharging 1.4 million cubic metres of water per second. PHOTO: AFP


The irrigation authorities seem to have embarked on a race against time 'sort of situation' as two of around five dozen gates of Sukkur Barrage on Indus River were broken in the wee hours of Friday amid impeding low to medium flood in some weeks.

On Saturday, the Chinese engineers managed to pull up one of the fallen gates, the gate number 44, and started the repair work.

The authorities are waiting to see a drop in the water level to repeat the same exercise for the gate number 47.

Meanwhile, the water supply to all the canals springing from the barrage has witnessed a massive drop, causing shortage of irrigation and drinking water.

"If the work is not completed in the next two weeks, I see catastrophe unfolding," warned former federal secretary Fazlullah Qureshi, while talking to the media. He also opposed the idea of reinstalling the same damaged gates after repair.

Furthermore, Sindh Irrigation Minister Jam Khan Shoro told the media in Sukkur that owing to the ongoing repair works, the right and left bank canals of the barrage will not get water.

According to him, the water which is supposed to be accumulated in the barrage with the help of its gates for onward supply to its canals is currently being discharged in downstream towards Kotri Barrage.

He said the reason for releasing water in downstream is to avoid building pressure on the barrage's structure. Shoro recalled that a similar incident had also happened in 1982 when gate number 31 had collapsed. However, the restoration did not take much efforts because of the month of December when water level is seasonally low in the river, he added.

With the credit facility of the World Bank, six gates, 31, 33, 34, 35, 39 and 40, were also replaced in February, 2023.



Replying to X

Comments are moderated and generally will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive.

For more information, please see our Comments FAQ