International Day of Peace was celebrated at U.S-Pakistan Center for Advanced Studies in Water (USPCAS-W) at Mehran University of Engineering and Technology (MUET) Jamshoro. On this occasion, Society of Water Managers (SWM) of the Center organised a program on ‘Water & Peace’ following the theme for this year-“Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) are the building blocks of the peace”.
Mr. Nazeer Essani, General Manager (Transition) Sindh Irrigation Drainage Authority (SIDA) speaking in the seminar said that water is both challenge as well as an opportunity to bring peace. He said that Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) are building blocks for peace and through the implementation of 17 SDGs; the world can be changed by keeping the poverty and hunger at distance.
He said that since water has political dynamics as well, therefore it is potential and real source of conflict among many countries in the world. Mr. Essani said that we have been witnessing wars and conflicts in Middle East in which oil is perceived as major source of conflict, however in reality it is water behind all these conflicts. He further revealed that 56 per cent of Sindh province is out of canal command and therefore the major portion of the land in the province is not irrigated properly.
He said that Indus Water Treaty of 1960 took 10 years to get Pakistan and India agreed on the water distribution decision and it showed the importance of the water between the both nations. Dr. Bakhshal Khan Lashari, project director of USPCAS-W in his welcome address said that water and peace are equally important and interconnected in various development dimensions. He said that use of water has multiple development purposes, whereas agriculture is one of the primary contributors in the economy of the country.
He further said that USPCAS-W is producing water managers and leaders who are capable to contribute in the solutions of water related challenges faced by Pakistan today. He further appreciated United States Agency for International Development (USAID) and the University of Utah, USA for providing financial and technical support to this center respectively. The seminar was followed by the speeches and picture competition among students on the given theme in which students Mr. Farhan Wahid, Mr. Vipin Kumar Oad, Mr. Nabeel Ali, Mr. Faris Ahmed, Ms. Uzma Jabeen, Ms. Sumra and other participated.
Dr. Kamran Ansari, Deputy Director USPCAS-W in his concluding remarks said that water is one of the most important commodities and it is being said that future conflicts and wars if not avoided will be on the water related issues. Mr. Daniyal Hassan, president of the society, and members Mr. Muhammad Nauman, Mr. Halar Rajper, Mr. Sohail Raza , Mr. Azizullah and others also spoke on this occasion. In the end of activity, shields and certificates were distributed among the students. Ms. Rakhshanda Bano, Assistant Professor USPCAS-W, and Ms. Fatima Zaidi student of MS facilitated the session. The large number of students, faculty, and staff of the Center attended the event.
Sahib Khan Bhand,
Communication, Media & Outreach Expert
USPCAS-W, MUET Jamshoro