Federal government is likely to request provinces for staggering canal closure to maintain maximum outflow from Tarbela and Mangla reservoirs, well informed sources told Business Recorder. Minister for Water and Power, Ahmad Mukhtar has convened inter provincial meeting here on Friday (today) regarding canal closure during December 2012, January and February 2013, three months before the closures starts.
However, analysts believe that convening of a meeting regarding canal closure so early is an ill-conceived decision on part of the Water and Power Ministry. According to sources, both reservoirs ie Tarbela and Mangla have been filled up to only 45 percent or 6 MAF, adding that government should focus on filling of reservoirs instead of holding meetings on canal closure.
One of the analysts was of the view that the government should also take action against, Metrological Department and National Disaster Management Authority (NDMA) for presenting exaggerated statistics on rains and even talking about floods. The meeting will discuss the following agenda (i) actual canal closure scheduled for 2011-12. Was it staggered among province (ii) actual Irsa indents during canal closure 2011-12 (iii) actual hydel generation during 2011-12 (iv) proposed canal closure schedule for 2012-13 (v) proposed Irsa indents during canal closure period 2012-13 (vi) expected hydel generation during canal closure period 2012-13. Ministry of Water and Power is of the view that power generation plan to offset reduced hydro-generation. Member Water, Wapda and General Manager, NPCC will give presentations on the prospects of water and power in the winter season.