Water Crisis

Water Crisis

Pakistan is a country known for its long-lasting energy crisis and economic problem. But very few people know water resources in Pakistan are decreasing very speedily. If Pakistan did not change its strategy to store water, then Pakistan may face a very huge shortage of water in the future.

A recent report issued by ‘International Monitory Fund’ about ‘Issues in Managing water crisis and policy instrument’ stated that Pakistan has been decreasing its water storage speedily from its independence which was 5600 cubic meters, now is 1017 cubic meters. And if Pakistan did not change its strategy to store water and build dams then Pakistan may face very problems with a shortage of water.

Although Pakistan have many glaciers . But it have only on Indus River System which flows  85% only during  June to September. Pakistan have very harsh environment with huge floods and drought. Pakistan should have to increase its storage capacity through building of more dams. But our govt. don’t take interest in this side. Pakistani dams only 30 days water storage capacity, India have 220 days , while Egypt  have 1000  day water storage. Which is very alarming situation for us.

IMF in its recent meeting with Pakistani officials suggested them to enter their agriculture side into tax system . So, that Pakistan can grow its economy. Pakistani agriculture side uses round about 95% of our water usage. But did not give tax. Our agriculture system gives only 1% tax, while it adds 21% to GDP. In Punjab 60% of farmers uses water for agriculture take directly from tube wells. Now subsidies on electricity pumps  also increases uses of water.

According to IMF report , tax collection from agriculture supports only 24% annual maintenance and operating. And govt. can only collect 60% of total receivables. It also stated that govt. is not willing to get tax from these feudal lords , because govt. have its own interests from them. Some of these feudal lords are National assembly members and govt. don’t  want to make them their opponent in any case.

Report also suggests that govt. should have to make strategy to make different water expenses for different crops. Because different  crops use different amount of water. For example: Rice uses 60% more water than Cotton. But when farmers have to pay equal payment for every crops, then they don’t take care of usage of water in irrigation.

At this time, govt. needs to make strategy to prevent wastage of water and to store water properly. Govt. should have to ensure useful and need base usage of water. Govt. should also have to build dams speedily in order to store water for future. It can’t be possible without help of stakeholders and govt. institutions .

Federal govt. should also have to encourage provinces to enter agriculture in tax system before next coming NFC Awards. Otherwise, if govt. did not take interest in this case, then it will be very huge problem for our country and people. May Allah helps us to counter this problem and saves us from huge shortage of water.

Courtesy / Credit: Mudasir Rasool

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