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Nai Gaj Dam: SC summons three ministers over project’s funding

LAHORE: The Supreme Court in the case about construction of Nai Gaj dam in Dadu district of Sindh on Monday, summoned three federal ministers Asad Umar, Faisal Vawda and Khusro Bakhtiar before the court, ARY News reported.

A three-member bench of the apex court headed by Chief Justice Saqib Nisar heard the case regarding lack of funding in the construction of the dam, which has delayed the completion of the project.

The petitioner informed the bench today that the PC-1 for the construction of Nai Gaj Dam has been submitted but funds for the project not being released.

The Executive Committee of National Economic Council (ECNEC) has yet to grant approval of the project, the petitioner told the court.

Chief Justice Nisar said that all three ministers being summoned to Islamabad and their approval will also be attained.

All three ministers, Federal Minister for Finance Asad Umar, Minister for Water Resources Faisal Vawda and Minister for Planning and Development Khusro Bakhtiar will explain their positions appearing before the court, the chief justice said.

The Supreme Court had accepted a petition for hearing regarding the construction of Nai Gaj dam in September this year.

The completion of the Nai Gaj dam has been delayed by at least four years and the main reason is said to be insufficient funding for the project.

The construction work on the Nai Gaj dam was started in year 2012 and the project was supposed to be completed by April 2015. But due to the inordinate delay it is now expected to be completed by June 2019.

The delay has led to escalation in the cost of the project from initial Rs16.92 billion to over Rs26bn, as stated in the revised plan of the project.

Nai Gaj Dam is an embankment dam on the hilly torrent of Gaj in the gorge area at the edge of Kirthar Mountains range at about 65 km (40 miles) north-west of Dadu city. The dam’s power station would have a 4.2 MW installed capacity of power generation.

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