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World Rivers Day: Indus Delta at the mercy of advancing Arabian Sea

KARACHI: The World Rivers Day or annual International Day of Action for Rivers being celebrated on March 14 (today) to salute the life-giving waters on mother Earth, and honor all those who have worked hard to ensure that our rivers continue flowing
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Indus, is a mighty river, flowing in this region of the world, sustaining life here for thousands of years with its elegance and might of roaring water. An eternal life giver to this region is now facing a challenging time.

Indus after passing through other parts of Pakistan enters in Sindh and than in southern parts of the province where it divides in branches and take scores of routes to flow into the Arabian Sea.

This delta region of Indus river was once prosper and rich with diversity of life is now looks like a desert region after the water flow dried up before reaching to the sea.

The Indus River Delta, forms where the Indus River flows into the Arabian Sea, mostly in the southern Sindh province. The delta covers an area of about 16,000 square miles. It is home to the largest arid mangrove forests in the world, as well as many birds, fish and the rare Indus Dolphin.

The Indus delta getting less water as a result of large-scale irrigation works capturing large amounts of the water of the river in upstream before it reaches the delta.

The result has been catastrophic for both the environment and the local population.

Several settlements and fishing communities in the delta have been abandoned as result of lack of water in the Indus and the advancing Arabian Sea water, which is encroaching the land of the delta. According to some estimates the sea has submerged thousands of acres of the agriculture land in Thatta, Sujawal and Badin districts of Sindh in the southernmost part of the country.

The experts suggest the flow of the freshwater of the river in the delta region to stop the advancement of the seawater and protect the precious region from extinction.

The Indus water not being released to downstream from Kotri barrage leaving the delta at the mercy of the destructive waves of the seawater which is advancing with the every passing day.

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