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Sindh demands removal of IRSA chairman

By Our Correspondent
May 26, 2021

KARACHI: The Sindh government demanded immediate removal of IRSA (Indus River System Authority) chairman.

Briefing the media about cabinet decisions on Tuesday, Sindh Information Minister Syed Nasir Hussain Shah claimed the IRSA’s chairman had embarrassed Sindh’s member during the IRSA meeting who was advocating due water share for the province. zDemanding immediate removal of IRSA’s chairman, the minister said the IRSA had become a party to the interprovincial water dispute instead of acting as an honest arbitrator. Shah also accused IRSA of involvement in stealing Sindh’s water share, and of releasing misleading and fake data about water distribution.

The minister said the IRSA chairman had failed to ensure judicious distribution of water among the provinces and blamed the Authority for deliberately releasing water to Punjab from Taunsa-Panjnad Canal which was a violation of 1991 water accord.

The provincial minister cautioned the IRSA chairman to provide due share of water to Sindh, while adding that the growers and farmers were protesting in Sindh due to an acute shortage of water. Nasir Hussain Shah also asked the federal government to intervene and stop injustice being meted out to the Sindh province.

Earlier, the Sindh cabinet strongly expressed serious reservations over the water shortage in the province during the ongoing Kharif season and termed it as an act of enmity towards Sindh and pressed the federal government to manage the water shortage among provinces in line with the provisions of the 1991 water accord.

“The crops are wilting in Sindh and the IRSA (Indus River System Authority) has failed to implement the water accord,” the cabinet observed. The cabinet meeting was held under the chairmanship of Sindh Chief Minister Syed Murad Ali Shah here at the CM House. At the outset, the cabinet members said that due to water shortage, the growers of Sindh were facing serious problems. They admitted that there was water shortage across the country, but this shortfall should be managed among the provinces as per the agreed formula given in the water accord. “But this was not being done and an exclusive favour is being given to Punjab,” the cabinet members observed.

The cabinet also expressed reservations over the ongoing anti-encroachment drive launched by Pakistan Railways in different districts, particularly in Sukkur and Rohri where the railway authorities were bulldozing houses of poor people. The cabinet members requested the CM to take up water shortage and railway’s anti-encroachment drive with the federal government.