“We are not averse to the idea of dams, per se. Build them as you may,” says Khuda Bux Lashari, a social worker from Ghorabari union committee in Thatta, an area in the midst of Indus river mouth (theoretically) and sea creeks of Arabian Sea, although he adds, “…but its the malice of intent behind building these big structures that haunts us.”
What malice he could be referring to? While it’s hard to establish any malevolent intent, what’s easy to acknowledge is the fact that the delta region now only gets its share of water when the country either floods or is expected to.
When delta of river Indus doesn’t get its freshwater share from dams and barrages built above, the sea water creeps up and ruins their lands, contaminates water table, and truncates the fertility of the region due to salinity.
On the other hand, the government doesn’t even build them sea dykes that would at least do little to outdo the damages of sea water taking over and eating up lands. They say this deluge in wake of unprecedented rains and mismanagement of water on part of authorities, fared better for the delta region since it has pushed sea water back miles off of creeks.
However, they are concerned this is just a one-off thing every few years and wherein the water remains in creeks, or delta, for a few days only.
We don’t wish floods, we deplore the devastation they have caused, they say. “It’s the better water policies and fair share that we wish.”