Survival sans KBD difficult: Punjab Forum

The Punjab Forum on Friday said it was difficult for the country to survive without proposed hydroelectric Kalabagh Dam (KBD). “The existing dams are not enough to save country from becoming desert while the Diamer-Bhasha Dam will take almost a decade to start power generation,” it said.
“Tarbela and Mangla Dams are likely die by 2030 and 2070. KBD is the best option to cater to the growing energy demand,” said Baig Raj, President Punjab Forum, said in a statement.
The KBD can start producing electricity in 2.5 years while it would have a lifetime of 450 years. It can boost industry and agriculture, cut oil import bill, save foreign exchange and help irrigate twenty million acres of wasteland, he said.
He said the country was losing reservoir capacity and vast tracts were becoming barren calling for urgent decisions otherwise country would be left with one sowing season.
“Those who are opposing KBD are dancing on the tunes of India that has been conspiring to make Pakistan as a waterless country,” he added.
Baig Raj said an economical issue has been made a serious political matter in Pakistan giving opportunity to rulers to pursue controversial rental and thermal power projects.
“Reliance of thermal power will continue to push cost of electricity which amount to playing havoc with the masses, industry and agriculture while Punjab is made to share most of the burden,” he said.
“Why can’t government convince allies on construction of KBD if it can do the same in case of NFC award,” he questioned.
He said that Punjab is being denied of energy which has left millions unemployed which can result in food insecurity. “Tall claims of provincial harmony and equal distribution of resources is nothing but a deception.”
Only KBD, the best natural dam site in Pakistan, can cure the ailing economy of Pakistan, the Punjab Forum statement said.
Conversion of dispensary into hospital demanded: Residents of Dheri Hassan Abad demanded conversion of dispensary into 50 beds hospital. This dispensary was constructed in 1970 in the vast area of three kanals but it looks to be a haunted house being in miserable condition due to lack of interest by the cantonment board.
Dheri Hassan Abad is thickly populated area and this dispensary is insufficient to provide medical facilities to the residents, said a social worker.
As the existing area of the dispensary is larger and more than the requisite capacity of a dispensary, it is being misused. The boundary wall of the dispensary stands collapsed and the drug addicts and drivers of wagons continue to use the rooms and compound of the dispensary for their unhealthy activities. Drug addicts use the area of dispensary because it is not being used for any purpose and is lying vacant, said Khushi Muhammad, a local resident.
These drug addicts even don’t allow the patients to come to the dispensary to get treatment, said Rehmat Ullah, a teacher. In their presence no person dares to approach any doctor in the dispensary, he added. This is all due to lack of proper arrangements of the dispensary as the area of the dispensary is more than the requirement of a dispensary, said a shopkeeper. If this dispensary is converted into a 50-bed hospital, the long standing demand of the residents of this area would be met and the vast area of the dispensary would also come under use. Otherwise, it would come under the illegal occupation of land grabbers, said residents of the area.