Pajhwok Afghan News

Paktika residents want Palto Dam project works resumed

SHARANA (Pajhwok): Residents of southeastern Paktika province have asked the government to resume work on the Palto Dam project.

The previous government had launched construction of the dam, but the work had to be stopped following the regime change.

However, provincial officials had said works of the dam were halted due to some technical issues and would be resumed in near future.

Haji Abdul Khaliq, an elder of Malakano Village of Sharana City, told Pajhwok Afghan News that construction works of the dam were started in 2021, but then stopped.

He urged the government to complete the project as it would irrigate raid-fed lands.

“The construction of Palto Dam is one of the main demands of the people of Paktika province since past, which is yet to be met,” civil society activist Abdul Raouf Zahin said.

He said the government must give priority to the completion of the vital project and fulfill people’s expectations.

Wahab Wairan, a resident of Nawi Sharana village, said the construction of Palto Dam required less cost compared to the Dam of Shah Arous of Kabul province while its storage capacity was higher, so the government must give priority to Palto dam.

Paktika provincial officials say the previous government launched unplanned  works of Palto Dam and the incumbent authorities will begin the works according to its plan and design.

Qari Mohammad Zakir, head of Gomal-Paktika sub-basin office, said: “There were problems in works when this project was launched during the previous government, it even did not have some documents, its survey has recently completed and the works will begin soon”.

Zakir said the Ministry of Water and Power had stopped works of 42 dams nationwide to assess all contracts.

He said 1.346 billion afs had been allocated for the dam project and its contract was re-inked with the National Development Company.

Zakir added: “The wall of the dam will be 30 meters hight and 264 meters long, this design can tolerate extended wall that reach up to 45 meter in height”.

The basin of this dam is very wide and has the capacity to store 25 million cubic meters of water.”

The basin of Palto Dam is naturally made and if its 25 meters wall is built, it will have the capacity to irrigate 5,436 hectares of land.

It is worth mentioning that Palto dam was approved during former king Mohammad Zahir Shah’s time, but is yet to be completed.

aw/ma

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