FM Qureshi asks for joint efforts to tackle water crises across country
ISLAMABAD (92 News) – Foreign Minister Shah Mehmood Qureshi on Monday called for joint efforts to tackle water crises across the country.
Qureshi said that Sindh and Balochistan have been facing water scarcity since long as the previous governments had neglected the issue.
He admitted that Pakistan Peoples’ Party leader Syed Khurshid Ahmed Shah’s claim about water crises in Sindh was authentic and said that Karachiites have been going through severe water crises for decades and compelled to buy water from tankers.
“Water scarcity is not the issue of any single province or the centre. It is a national issue and a national approach should be adopted to address this. It is our shared responsibility to tackle this issue,” he said calling for a national approach to resolve the water crises.
The FM said the federal government and the provincial governments need to collaborate and take steps to ensure that every citizen of the country has clean drinking water.
Minister of State for Parliamentary Affairs Ali Muhammad Khan told the House that the federal government has formed a task force under the Sindh governor to address water scarcity and other important issues in Karachi.
Responding to a Calling Attention Notice, he said the federal government wants to resolve this issue with the cooperation of the provincial government.
Ali Muhammad Khan said water supply is a devolved subject under the 18th amendment; however, the federal government is very much concerned over it and will extend full support to the provinces in this regard.
He said provincial government should take action against the tanker mafia in Karachi.
The Minister of State said federal government is also implementing a project of two billion rupees for clean drinking water in Islamabad.
Taking floor on the subject, Foreign Minister Shah Mehmood Qureshi said water is a national issue and a national approach should be adopted to address it.
He said the federal government and the provincial governments need to collaborate and take steps to ensure that every citizen of the country has clean drinking water.
Speaking on the water issue, Minister for Planning Khurso Bakhtiar said the government will allocate ten percent of Public Sector Development Program for water projects.
He said the government is formulating policies for provision of water in urban centers and desalination of the sea water.
The Minister said dams need to be constructed in FATA and Balochistan to meet water requirement in those areas. He said the PTI government rationalized water schemes announced by the PML-N government for Islamabad in view of the availability of funds.
Earlier, PML-N leader said the PML-N government had formed a water policy, and also allocated funds for K-4 project in Karachi and several schemes for Islamabad.
He said the incumbent government dropped several water schemes, which had been allocated by the PML-N for Islamabad.
PPP leader Syed Khurshid Shah said Sindh is not being provided its share of water. He said Karachi needs 1200 Cusec water, which is not being provided.