As the monsoon is gradually withdrawing from Pakistan and all the major rivers are flowing in the state of normal flow, the Indus River System Authority has started releasing extra water from the reservoirs to meet irrigation water needs of the provinces for maturing the strategic Kharif crops including rice, cotton, sugarcane, maize, vegetables, fodder and orchards.
Punjab Irrigation Canal regulator M.H. Siddique told Business Recorder here on Friday that Punjab has put up an indent for provision of 114,000 cusecs of water, 57,000 cusecs from the Mangla zone and 57,000 cusecs from the Indus zone. He said Punjab is drawing 46,600 cusecs of running water from the Chenab river of which Irrigation department is putting about 30,000 cusecs in the big Upper Chenab Canal (UCC) and Marala – Ravi Link canal (M-R LINK) to irrigate Kharif crops in the Central and south – eastern Punjab. Against the inflow of 18,600 cusecs water in river Jhelum, the water regulatory body is releasing 35,000 cusecs of water downstream the Mangla dam to meet water needs of Punjab. IRSA is also releasing necessary quantities of water in the irrigation canals emanating from the Jinnah, Chashma and Taunsa barrages on the Indus river as it was discharging 20,000 cusecs extra water downstream the Tarbela dam to augment running water in the Indus river. The River Kabul is contributing 22,600 cusecs water to the water economy of the country.
He said due to flood water still floating in lower Sindh, Sindh Irrigation department does not need more water for at least ten days as it is discharging 147,000 cusecs water in the Indus delta after filling all its irrigation canals. Weather forecast for next three days: Mainly hot and dry weather is expected in most parts of the country. However rain-thunderstorm is expected at isolated places in Malakand, Hazara, Peshawar, Mardan, Bannu, D.I. Khan, Zhob, Kalat, and Rawalpindi divisions, Islamabad, upper FATA, Gilgit-Baltistan and Kashmir.