Challenges and Its Vital Role in Pakistan’s Energy and Water Management

The state of affairs is concerning; Pakistan may have a major water crisis by 2025 if there is not enough water storage. The Honourable Chief Justice of Pakistan (CJP), appalled by the country’s water situation and the executive branch’s inactivity, independently started a fund-raising drive to build the Diamer-Bhasha dam on the Indus River. In addition to being used for storing water during rainy and snowy seasons, dams also aid in reducing the frequency of flooding in the Indus basin.

The only significant water storage facility planned for Kalabagh was put on hold because of opposition from the political leaders in the three provinces, even though Pakistanis have already started to suffer from the country’s ongoing water deficit for irrigation and drinking. The important problem of water scarcity resulting from storage limitation was neglected in this regrettable bickering about its site. To meet the demands of an expanding population, none were prepared to suggest building a water storage dam on other locations. The only thing that came of the drab attempts by successive governments to start construction on the Diamer-Bhasha dam was the purchase of land.

Unfortunately, there has been a lot of criticism leveled at the judiciary for this sincere attempt to solve a significant issue, based on very weak arguments. It is suggested that professionals should plan and raise the necessary funding for a dam of this size, and that their involvement is necessary for both the technical and scale aspects of the project. Sadly, the political leadership has not delivered in this area; instead, they have persistently obstructed the project’s resource allocation by utilizing the yearly development plans to gain political capital or appease special groups.

It is impossible to anticipate any significant outcomes when such elaborate and technically challenging undertakings are given little priority. In the instance of Diamer-Bhasha, the problems facing the average person were not addressed due to a lack of political will. Put plainly, our political leadership was unlikely to see much use in starting a dam project that would take 10 years to finish, since credit for the project would go to whichever party happened to be in power at that time.

The main infrastructure of the dam would be located in Diamer, which is a part of Gilgit-Baltistan, an area that the Pakistani government has designated as disputed. The provisions for local government do not even completely meet the requirements for self-rule stipulated in the UN resolution. The people in the area are calling for the full integration of GB with Pakistan, along with all the privileges that come with it under the constitution.

Challenges and Its Vital Role in Pakistan’s Energy and Water Management