Contentious project: Sindh comes out full throttle against Kalabagh Dam

Published: December 7, 2012
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Sindh Chief Minister Qaim Ali Shah talking to reporters at the Chief Minister House in Karachi. PHOTO : PPI

Sindh Chief Minister Qaim Ali Shah talking to reporters at the Chief Minister House in Karachi. PHOTO : PPI

KARACHI: 

Sindh is exerting all its political might to condemn the Kalabagh Dam – a contentious project revived recently by a Lahore High Court (LHC) decision.

Presented on Thursday, the Sindh Assembly is set to pass a resolution against the dam, while the chief minister lashed out at the LHC decision following the assembly session.

Pakistan Peoples Party (PPP)’s Sindh Council in a meeting held at the Chief Minister House on Thursday adopted a resolution against the Kalabagh Dam. Sindh Chief Minister Qaim Ali Shah, expressing dismay over the decision, termed it ‘intolerable’ for the people of Sindh.

Earlier in the day, the Sindh Assembly echoed with impassioned speeches against the decision and the project. Though a resolution was not passed, it is expected to be done today (Friday).

The opposition and treasury were both eager to outmatch each other’s condemnation of the project. Both benches moved different resolutions to condemn the verdict and called it a “conspiracy” that can trigger a civil war in the country. The house witnessed pandemonium as lawmakers accused each other of supporting the Kalabagh Dam during their earlier tenures.

PPP MPA Imran Zafar Leghari proposed the resolution. Soon after, all the members rushed in to declare their party’s opposition to the mega project. In an emotional speech, Pakistan Muslim League – Functional (PML-F) Nusrat Sehar Abbasi called the dam a “bomb” that can claim millions of lives.

In the evening, addressing the media after the meeting, which was attended by a number of key PPP leaders, the Sindh chief minister said that the decision was unacceptable not only for Sindh but for the people of two other provinces as well.

The opposition

“It is a unilateral verdict which aims at imposing the decision on people of the other three provinces who have already rejected the project by passing resolutions in their respective assemblies,” he added.

Lashing out at Lahore High Court for its decision, he said that the court gave a verdict without listening to the other parties affected by the decision.  “The forces behind the decision aim creating a divide among the four provinces,” he revealed.

Shah added that while people were going through severe water shortages the court was busy making decisions to please a few others. The minister also said that the court had no jurisdiction to give such orders, which have now taken the shape of a political issue.

Bilawal to address rally in Garhi Khuda Bux

The PPP co-chairman Bilawal Bhutto Zardari is expected to address the public gathering in Garhi Khuda Bux on the occasion of Benazir Bhutto’s death anniversary. This will be the first event in which the chairman will directly address the public.

The chief minister also stated that the elections would be held on time and after three months President Zardari will announce the final date for the elections.

Published in The Express Tribune, December 7th, 2012. 

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Reader Comments (6)

  • Peer Sain
    Dec 7, 2012 - 4:04AM

    No Kalabagh is not going to harm Sindh in any way. If you keep doing this we will never solve our problems as a nation. All objections must be over ruled. Sindh has lot of water which the vaderas have cornered. Introduce land ceiling and all these problems will be over and the zamindars will be making their CVs to apply for jobs and they should. They have enjoyed for far too long without working for a living.

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  • Dec 7, 2012 - 10:24AM

    Kala bag dam never bult

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  • Zahid Kakar
    Dec 7, 2012 - 10:37AM

    What is mean of Consensus for Punjab? The Consensus was developed 40 years back on Kalabagh Dam and Three of Four Provinces have strongly opposed the construction of Kalabagh Dam at different times but Punjab is once again planning to take over the Water Resources of Pukhtunkhwa and Sindh…

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  • Sudhir
    Dec 7, 2012 - 11:15AM

    Selfish politicians have politicized the Kalabagh Dam issue to such an extent that no one is now prepared to listen to any sane reasoning. For God sake, Instead of outrightly rejecting the proposal, at least sit down to find a consensus solution.

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  • Mon Amour
    Dec 7, 2012 - 2:44PM

    They are so opposed to Kalabagh dam but they should keep in mind that the last two floods which wrecked havoc wouldnt have happned if Kalabagh dam had been built by now.

    Just give these nationlists a plot or two they will start campinging in favor of Kalabagh .

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  • Dec 7, 2012 - 11:37PM

    Our Today Judicial activism can be called anything except JUDICIAL. It is a common practice that court invites the views of grieved parties or stake holders. In Kalabagh Dam case LHC never issued Notices. The Opportunist and Political judges are trying to further alienate the masses only to become popular amongst Punjabis. Pakistan is a Federation and those CROOKS Controlling Judiciary should not forget that.

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