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Crops may get parched as water shortage hits Helmand

Crops may get parched as water shortage hits Helmand

Oct 04, 2015 - 14:47

LASHKARGAH (Pajhwok): Some farmers of southern Helmand province on Sunday complained their crops were going to dry up due to lack of water in the province.

The water level in Helmand River had dropped, threatening to parch their crops, a resident of Garmser district, Mohammad Aslam, told Pajhwok Afghan News.

“Most of the people meet their economic needs from agricultureinfo-icon but they would not have any benefit if the irrigation problem is not resolved,” he said.

Growers in Helmand generally cultivate basil, cotton, maize and vetches but they are faced with lack of irrigation water, according to another farmer from Khanshin district, Wali Dad.

“Due to the shortage of water in Helmand River, people tend to fight over irrigation water. Many have problem fetching even drinking water hardly,” he said.

“The water level is currently lower in our area compared with previous years but I don’t know what the reason is,” Nad Ali district inhabitant Bismillah grumbled.

Water management officials had opened the doors to the Kajaki power turbine and level in the river had had thus fallen, Director of Water and Energy Eng. Nasrullah Qane explained.

“Not only irrigation of farmlands is a problem; the water shortage has also affected the power system. Now the 31 megawatts capacity of the dam has fallen to 26 megawatts,” he said.

However, Water Management Director Eng. Khan Aqa confirmed the water level had generally come down in the province because of a drought. “I think the problem will be resolved by rainfalls.”

The Kajaki dam’s power-generating capacity had been reduced by sedimentation, but they did not have the facilities and resources to clear it, the official concluded.


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