Pollution causing serious harm to Keenjhar Lake
By: YASIR BABBAR
Sindh tourism department has miserably failed to free Keenjhar Lake of pollution despite showing expenses worth millions of rupees in its budget documents, it is learnt on Friday. The department has made tall claims on many occasions but the fact is that the lake still suffers from pollution and acute water shortage.
“Keenjhar, Pakistan’s second largest natural freshwater lake, a Ramsar site, a protected game sanctuary and the major source that fulfils the drinking water requirement of Karachi, needs protective measures on emergency basis,” said a senior officer of the department who recently visited the lake.
On the condition of keeping his name secret, the official told Business Recorder that though several public sector departments, international donors and organisations, community-based organisations and non-governmental organisations were running different projects at the site, none had bothered to come forward to work towards the lake’s preservation and making it pollution-free.
He said that the lake was crucial for Karachi Water and Sewerage Board (KWSB) as it was the major source that provides drinking water to 1.8 million inhabitants of the city. Besides, the lake was also considered to be an important sanctuary of migratory birds that pass through Pakistan in winter, he added. “Highly contaminated industrial effluent is being poured into the lake without proper treatment,” he said and regretted that none of the departments were interested in preserving the lake.