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RDA to make rainwater harvesting compulsory in new houses.

Byline: Aamir Yasin

RAWALPINDI -- The Rawalpindi Development Authority (RDA) will soon make it compulsory for rainwater harvesting wells to be installed in new houses and legislation to this effect will be started soon as well.

'Rainwater harvesting for private houses has been planned. The government is working on making legislation to this effect for arid areas such as the Potohar region so people will not rely on water supplied via pipes alone,' said RDA Chairman Arif Abbasi.

He told Dawn that people will be informed about rainwater harvesting so they can collect rainwater for daily use and drinking purposes.

Mr Abbasi said that a water conservation drive will be launched in the city in the coming days and that the Water and Sanitation Agency (Wasa) will impose a ban on washing cars with clean water.

He said the government has spent millions of rupees on cleaning water in Rawal and Khanpur dams which is being wasted on washing cars in service stations and private houses.

He said the provincial government is also working on protecting natural water resources and managing it properly.

'It will soon start new dams for the twin cities to end the water shortage,' he said.

Meanwhile, Wasa on Friday observed International Water Day with a commitment to save water for the future. An event was held at the Wasa offices at which PTI chief organiser Saifullah Khan Niazi was the chief guest. RDA Chairman Arif Abbasi, Director General Hayat Luk, Wasa Managing Director Mohammad Tanveer, Parks and Horticulture Authority Chairman Arif Mehmood and senior officials of civic bodies attended the event.

The RDA chairman said PTI had promised to solve the water issue on a priority basis and had done some work on it the last six months.

He said the provincial government was working on imposing penalties for wasting water.

'Wasa will install a water meter in commercial buildings and plazas so they will pay for the water they utilise,' he said.

Mr Abbasi said private housing societies will be brought under the tax net and that developers and owners will pay the bill for the underground water they extract via tubewells.

The provincial government is working on the Chahan and Daducha dams and there are plans for bringing water from the River Jhelum and Sindh to the garrison city, he said.

Mr Niazi said the prime minister wants to start work on new dams as soon as possible to address the water shortage across the country.

He said it is the duty of every citizen to save water and repair leaks in their premises.

He stressed on the need to create awareness among people about water wastage and informing them about ways to save water.

He said that drinking water would became precious in coming days due to climate change and that reservoirs should be protected.

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Publication:Dawn (Karachi, Pakistan)
Date:Mar 23, 2019
Words:538
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