More Crises in Pakistan: Electricity, Flour, Sugar, Water, Sui Gas Crises – What is the way out?

Posted on January 3, 2008
Filed Under >Darwaish, Economy & Development, Poetry, Politics
Total Views: 86276



Everyone these days seems to be talking about the elections, the tragic death of Benazir Bhutto and its impact on federation of Pakistan, the ever high anti Pakistan and anti Army sentiment in Sindh, Balochistan and FATA. The ordinary Pakistanis, middle and lower class in particular, are faced with a long list of other serious crises (making their daily lives a misery) which, unfortunately, have got very little attention. Latest in the list are the Power crisis/Load-shedding, water, Sui Gas and Flour or Wheat crisis.
The Power crisis or Load-shedding has been so severe since last 2 weeks or so that here in Lahore, we feel like living in caveman’s era. After every 30 minutes electricity goes off and we have to sit in the candle lights (except for the 5% who have generators:)) and wander around in the darkness. There are many areas of old city which are often without any electricity, gas or water for entire day in this extremely cold weather.
There have been difficult situations since the creation of Pakistan but I don’t think ever before so many crises have hit us in such quick succession. During last two years, particularly, we have seen nothing but crises, one after the other, and not a single one handled properly by government. It wouldn’t be wrong if we remember 2007 as a Year of Crises for Pakistan. On most occasions, authorities could have controlled situation by strict administration and better management. The inability to act and indifferent among the top government officials on these serious issues is astonishing, especially when elections are just around the corner. How can Q-league candidates even think of coming to people and ask for votes considering the terrible situation after their 5 years rule? Or may be enough votes have already been managed . Everybody seems to be interested in power game and political survival and there is no plan of action to handle the very basic problems. Nobody is coming forward from government authorities, explaining the cause of, for example the flour crisis, and informing public on the actions being taken to improve the situation.

The year 2008 has brought several gifts for Pakistanis including the Bijli, Paani, Sui Gas and Aata Buhraan (power, water, natural gas and flour crises). Yes water too because not many people understand the connection between water supply with the availability of electricity in Pakistan. The tube-wells which supply water to most cities are run by electricity. I remember about 2-3 years ago, when there used to be criticism on Muslim League (Q) Government that all decisions are made somewhere else and they just say Yes Boss (dummies). Mr. Musharraf gave an interview on Geo and highlighted the point that he doesn’t interfere at all in government operations and the only things he looks after is the war against terrorism and the future power needs of Pakistan. I am sure many of you remember the presentations and news clip from aiwan-e-sadr (Presidential Palace) which used to appear on news channels daily and then the press briefings with claims of new dams (including Kala Bagh dam) to be built and a plan has been made to fulfill Pakistan’s power needs for next 20 years. So, what happened to our tax money that has been wasted on funky presentations and planning and no actions and results?

Well, the result is that after last year’s nightmare situation in Karachi and some other parts of the country, now there is a serious Power Crisis in the ENTIRE country. Here in Lahore, we are facing load-shedding up to 7-8 hours a day in urban areas (that is in Lahore) and things are not improving. Initially the load-shedding was for 30 minutes after every 2 hours but since last week, they do it after every 1 hour during the day time and every 30 minutes after 5 PM (for 30 minutes mostly and 1 hour in between). The most irritating part of this load-shedding is that NO schedule whatsoever has been published for people to know and try to manage things in a better way. I was watching Geo and they were showing reports of rural areas of entire country where they are getting electricity for only 2-4 hours a day. Every indication of things getting even worse in January/February. Well, welcome to 2008.

Daily Times filed this report on load-shedding:

The Water and Power Development Authority (WAPDA) has decided to increase the timing of load shedding with a seven-hour shutdown on regular basis from Tuesday (today), officials told Daily Times on Monday.

The officials said that the authority was facing a shortfall of around 3,000 megawatts and that it had decided to increase the load shedding in rural and urban areas. Pakistan requires around 11,000 megawatts per day, while the per day availability is around 8,000 megawatts.

The officials said that the shortfall might increase to 5,000 megawatts during the upcoming summer, adding that the power deficit was likely to decrease during the start of 2009 because various new power generation projects would be started.

“It has been decided that WAPDA will do five to seven hours of load shedding per day in the rural areas, while four to six hours of load shedding will be done in cities,” the officials added.

The Pakistan Electric Power Company (PEPCO) has asked all distribution companies to increase the load shedding hours to overcome the shortfall. The closure of canals, release of less water by the Irrigation Department and the suspension of gas supply to power generating plants caused the power shortfall, PEPCO Managing Director Munawar Baseer Ahmed said, adding that the load shedding might increase in the coming days if WAPDA did not get gas or water to generate power.

Meanwhile, a cabinet meeting decided on Monday decided that any load shedding interval would not last longer than half-an-hour, Irfan Ghauri adds from Islamabad.

Geo has this report on Flour Crisis:

The flour crisis has intensified as people facing hardships to buy the essential food item on increased price. In Karachi wheat flour, ghee and edible oil have not been available at most of the utility stores. The flour if available at a utility store being sold at Rs.155 ten kilogram instead of the official rate of Rs. 130/-

Long queues of the people can be seen outside the utility stores in the city for flour, ghee and edible oil. The 10-kilogram bag of wheat flour being sold at 155 rupees instead of the official rate of Rs. 130/- at utility stores in the city. The other shops are selling the 10-KG bag of flour at Rs 280/-

The flour price in Zhob, Mastung, Loralai and other parts of Balochistan has hiked, while the food item is unavailable at utility stores in Quetta and other cities of the province. The chief minister of Balochistan has issued directives to the concerned officials for action against hoarders and called report on the issue within two days. According to the provincial secretary food Azam Baloch, 20-KG bag of flour being sold at Rs. 278, at 130 Fear Price Shops in Quetta and at various sale points arranged by the flour mills.

In Peshawar wheat flour is available only at few shops and being sold at Rs. 500 per 20-KG bag. According to the shopkeepers the flour supplies from the mills have decreased. The crowds of people can be witnessed at the utility stores but a spokesman of Utility Stores Corporation has said the stores could not meet the rising demand of the flour.

According to the NWFP Flour Mills Association the crisis was the result of dwindling supplies of wheat and flour from Punjab.

I started to recall the number of crises that we have seen under Musharraf’s regime and the list is really long. I wonder when he leaves office (surely he will leave or forced to leave someday soon), how people will remember him (if they do) and his X years in power. A dictator who gave Pakistan more crises than anyone in history? Here is what I could think of in just 5 minutes:

  1. Steel Mill
  2. Stock Exchange
  3. Law & Order
  4. Extremism
  5. Sugar
  6. Flour
  7. Electricity and Power
  8. Crisis of federation of Pakistan
  9. Political turmoil
  10. Credibility of state institutions
  11. Credibility of Armed Forces
  12. Lal Masjid
  13. The missing people
  14. The judicial crisis
  15. Freedom of speech and media crisis

Readers are most welcome to add to the list.

We are also hearing the news of upcoming Rice Crisis which is expected very soon. Beware all you rice lovers. I just don’t know what is the way out for ordinary citizens of Pakistan? Where is the impact of that economic prosperity and progress? People need things like food, energy, shelter, education, health and security to survive not the mobile phones and leased/financed motorcycles and cars. We have been hearing tall claims during last 5-6 years and I think we have a right to ask questions that where are the results? Whatever it is, some well known people have sure made a LOT of money during that time.

When I look at the current situation of Pakistan, it seems like a Masailistaan. As an optimist, I like to believe that things would be better in future. But just how, that I do not know. Somehow as a nation, we have to figure that out and quickly. Rigged or not so rigged elections may take place next month but how it would bring any positive change in ordinary person’s life remains to be seen. I would like to end this post with Ahmed Faraz’s kalaam which ends on a positive note.

125 Comments on “More Crises in Pakistan: Electricity, Flour, Sugar, Water, Sui Gas Crises – What is the way out?”

  1. whole LOTA love says:
    January 3rd, 2008 11:09 pm

    reminded me of John and Paul’s lines when he said,

    Its getting better

    John replied,


    could things get any more worse for us????

    when will we be able to say that ITS GETTING BETTER.

  2. mystic says:
    January 3rd, 2008 11:58 pm

    Yahi Dua maangi ja sakti hai; “Allah Pakistan ki Hifazat kare”

    “I am afraid, Musharraf will go in history as responsible for destruction of Pakistan”

    Woh intazar tha jiska ye woh sahar to nahi

  3. Rahim Khan says:
    January 4th, 2008 12:05 am

    Only way out is: musharraf out,

    which we have to wait till Obama takes office, as bush/cia is hellbent on protecting this dictator.

  4. temporal says:
    January 4th, 2008 12:20 am


    good post and recap of all that ails… now pardon if this appears naive …

    how will it alleviate all the ills you have listed if:

    * mushy goes
    * iftikhar returns
    * free and fair elections are held ( and tried and kicked out faces return)
    * (feel free to add more here)

  5. khan says:
    January 4th, 2008 12:48 am

    I can’t believe how we keep blaming musharaf for every wrong, be it power crises or terrorism issue, ALL past governments and ALL political parties and ALL leaders should be blamed equally, specially those who rule our country for last 25 years, they over-look these HUGE issues, PPP and PML twice got elected and didn’t raise issue of Dam seriously, even today no-one seems capable of dealing with religious extremism and provincial dis-agreement on Dams, i don’t know what good will come when musharaf goes.

  6. Dewana Aik says:
    January 4th, 2008 1:18 am

    While Pakistanis are still dreaming of shariat…India’s TATA motors is the likely buyer of Ford’s Jaguar and Land Rover divisions.

  7. Dewana Aik says:
    January 4th, 2008 1:27 am

    This tells us where we went wrong in the last 60 years. While we were busy trying to make an Islamic utopia (which btw has not happened in a long time if ever there was one), it was actually a question of science and economics to achieve quality of life. I wonder how many more decades will it take for us to understand this simple fact.

  8. zakoota says:
    January 4th, 2008 2:11 am

    Again I’d like to talk about Musharaf’s slogan ‘Pakistan first’. This guy knows fairly well, infact I am 100% sure that even young Pakistani kids know, that Pakistan lacks electric power to an extreme. What has he done in the last 8 years to get rid of this shortage? What was he and his imported prime minister thinking were they were inviting foreign investment? Even if you put worst law and order condition on a side for a while, who would invest in a country where there is shortage of power to run any industry, any institution, any business? Where is his ‘Pakistan first’ now? What measures have you done Mr Musharaf in the last 8 years to get rid of this shortage? Look at India, after States, France has also offered them civil nuclear power generation stations! On the last Chinese Premier’s visit, the nation expected that Musharaf will talk about our needs, atleast China is a country Pakistanis trust and would probably had agreed, but Musharaf didn’t do anything. Infact he stated that we already have a deal with them (he was talking about Chasma power station, the capaticy of which I believe is less than 500 megawatts and seems like a never ending project). What a shame Mr Musharaf! what a shame! you’ll be remembered with the worst remarks in the history Inshallah. The destrustion you have done to Pakistan is almost becoming irreversible and you are the only one to be blamed for!

  9. Mudassar says:
    January 4th, 2008 2:41 am

    Hi All,

    I want to ask all of us How many of us have ever done our SWOT (Strength Opportunity, Threat) analysis, we always keep blaming the governments whoever and whenever they are, I used to develop Energy Model of Pakistan to work out the gas demand in the country when I was in Pakistan and the demand forecast was made for 25 years. Population is the biggest factor for driving the energy demand, it increases the domestic demand, which in turn drives the industrial demand obviously more number of house hold more electricity required, more sugar more flour more fertilizer for more crops, everything is driven by population, now having grown up to 165 million, with the same land we had at our inception how do we think of alleviation of our problems.

  10. khan says:
    January 4th, 2008 3:13 am

    Good post Mr. Mudassar, and as far as your population point is concerned, general Ulehma strictly prohibit any kind of family planning, infact Musharaff raised that issue in the beginning, he called for scholars all over the world to talk on this topic, i remember i saw such conferrence once, and Musharaff do raise the issue of Dams, but where were we? Sindh and Sarhad strictly oppose the idea, same kind of negative response was given on the “fight against terrorism” issue, extremism is not a product of Musharaf gov, Author of this post have inserted “freedom of speech and media crisis as well, only if some channels were banned for some days, you can’t say there’s no freedom of speech, you can see a LOT of criticism going on at Musharaf at Aaj, Dawn news or Waqt, get your facts straight people, musharaf or no musharaf doesn’t make the difference.

  11. Zahid says:
    January 4th, 2008 3:48 am

    I can’t believe people still trying to support Musharraf after the mess he has created in 9 years. I ask such people do they live in Pakistan??? I bet not.

    Even in offices we are given tasks with whatever available resources and if we fail despite our best efforts, somebody else comes and replace and try to make things work. Democracy demands the same. If Pakistan had become what this regime used to claim on media (including Musharraf) then they would have got all the credit too. So when they get credit they should also be prepared to take responsibility of the mistakes and mess.

    The man had more than 9 years to come up with ideas and implement them. He had full authority, public support initially, money ($11 BN came just for War against Terrorism) and money from World Bank, ADB etc etc and even old loans rescheduled. What more could one ask??? Which democratic government in history had this kind of chance?

    The entire country is in crises and at stand still. Do you guys have any idea how many industries have been shut down and how many people have been unemployed during last few weeks ? Clearly he has completely failed for reasons of lack of vision and incompetence (forget what he thinks about himself and look at the results). You give a doctor’s job to an engineer and the result will be obvious. Now it is ironic that he wants to stick to Presidency because he like to believe that without him, God forbids, Pakistan will not exist and thats why he has become part of the problem now.

    Mr. Musharraf and Army should have mercy on Pakistan now and let the people of Pakistan elect and govern through their representatives. They have ruled Pakistan for more than 21 years since 1977 and have done enough damage.

    I would give others a chance to make things work for Pakistan rather than sticking to someone who simply is not capable and is the most unpopular man in the country right now.

  12. khan says:
    January 4th, 2008 5:25 am

    Nobody’s supporting Musharaf but i can’t buy the idea that the major cause of all these problems is Musharaf, of course he has failed, so have PPP thrice and PML (Q or N) , so? now what? musharaf goes, fair elections held, who wins? PPP or PML …. then what? Musharaf have failed once, these two have failed many times. dun just blame Musharaf, and dun try to fool yourself by thinking once Musharaf goes, everything will be alright.

  13. Mudassar says:
    January 4th, 2008 5:39 am

    Thanks Mr Zahid, I would again stress that I am not backing Musharraf or any government, what I am trying to suggest is that if we want change we will have to
    bring change from with in ourselves and we will have to stop thinking Pakistan as

  14. Rahim Khan says:
    January 4th, 2008 7:48 am

    @ Mudassar

    Number of Rotis consumed per day by the family 4

  15. Zagi says:
    January 4th, 2008 7:55 am

    Kon hain yeh loog apnay shjar aap kat kur
    Daitay hain phir duhai kay saiya kuray koi

    Ubaid-Ullah Aleem

  16. Mudassar says:
    January 4th, 2008 8:46 am

    @ RahimKhan,

    I agree that it is 5th grade math and you have every right to disagree, but for a fruitful discussion you need to tell how is it flawed and why is it pathetic????

  17. RE says:
    January 4th, 2008 9:40 am

    Now on all these issues I like to have answers from Musharraf and his team. And if these issues are linked to corruption all the people involved should be in Jails. I find these issues more important reasons to bash Musharraf than just hating him over politics.

  18. legaleagle says:
    January 4th, 2008 9:43 am

    Darwaish Ji,

    May I say that under such circumstances you make it sound like the sky is falling! A little load-shedding here and there and the crisis of like is part of the developing world. Let me know one country in this region with our comparable statistics which does not go through similar crises every now and then and I will join your band-wagon.

    This will pass like any other crises in the past and we will live through it like we have done about a thousand times in the past.

  19. faraz says:
    January 4th, 2008 9:56 am

    Where are electric power expert like Owais Mughal here? Someone who knows about WAPDA can shed some light?

    1)We know problem with KESC. No new power station was built and added to national grid from 1994 to 2007. All governments from 1994 to 2007 are responsible for mess up of KESC for their lack of vision and planning.

    2)Second thing is that ppl in Pakistan are buying more electricity and are stealing it iregularly by “Kunda system”.

    3) Our nuclear power plants are not being used for electricity but for making a-bombs.

    4) Kala bagh dam has not been built yet.

  20. Rahim Khan says:
    January 4th, 2008 10:15 am

    @Mudassar : “It

  21. Owais Mughal says:
    January 4th, 2008 10:52 am

    I will limit my comment to load-shedding problem only because i understand its reasons more than other economic problems.

    About electricity crisis, there is not much WAPDA can do in present circumstances when 33% of the power for Pakistan comes from Hydel sources. When water level is low in dams, electricity can not be produced b/c turbines don’t rotate fast enough Or there is not enough water to rotate them at all OR water comes with sand and silt causing turbines to jam. We are at mercy of nature there.

    Where WAPDA and govt went wrong was in planning. They didn’t plan any new power plant in the past whole decade. Only 300 MW Chashma and one 130+MW thermal plant in Shaikhupura have come online (for Punjab/NWFP) and one generation unit at Bin Qasim (for KESC) in the past many years which is obviously not enough.

    63% power of Pakistan comes from Oil and Sui Gas.

    The largest Independent Power Plant of Pakistan is located at Kot-Addu plant (1600 MW) which is mostly Gas Fired. This means everytime there is gas disruption from Sui (which is very frequent now), this plant is the first to go off national grid causing huge load shedding issues.

    Then there are many generating units which work on high speed diesel or furnace oil. With last week’s news that Pakistan’s strategic diesel stock is as low as 6 day-supply plus the riots of ‘jiyalas’ which stopped all means of communication of oil to upcountry, one can easily imagine who took the first hit. Power plants of course.

    Hydel power is the cheapest. Making small power stations at every incline of few feet on various streams/canals of Pakistan may be one solution. They are the fastest to bring to life.

    Huge Power plants and building huge dams take 10+ years to materialize. Pak cannot wait that long. That planning work should’ve been done in late 1990s. Power crisis is now and small generating units and unhindered supply of oil/gas to existing power plants is the short-term solution. For long term, big power plants have to be planned right now as they will take many years to start producing power.

  22. January 4th, 2008 11:06 am

    Mudassar Saab,

    Your comments sound well reasoned and since you have studied the energy issue I hope you will be able to help with some solutions.

    For example if you were to take control of energy policy what are the five things you will do first, please respond here and by email as I want to continue a long discussion on this topic via the links below:
    Email –

    Feimnallah Pakistan


  23. January 4th, 2008 11:10 am

    Owais Bhai,

    You know your stuff bhai!!


  24. RJ says:
    January 4th, 2008 11:24 am

    @Mudassir: I agree 100% with you, it is the population that is the real culprit; but for some reason this forum tries to turn every thing against Musharaf. Ghee and oil, and rest of the stuff will always be more expensive than the past, this is the law of nature, but alas intelligent people on this forum don’t understand it; or may be they do understand it, but they have a hidden agenda against Musharaf.

    Instead of preaching common sense (cut population, work hard etc) they preach hatred. God bless Pakistan.

  25. RE says:
    January 4th, 2008 11:43 am

    I am watching ARY news, They are showing people on the roads of Pakistan on Electricity Issues and Aataa Issues. I think now this is the way to go. These are the real issues effecting 80 % people of Pakistan. We should see more and more these peaceful marches bringing attention of Musharraf and his team to the core of problems. Rather than helping politicians help poor of Pakistan. This is the way to do it. On issues like Electricity , Aataa , and hike in prices for day to day living are the issues I will bash Musharraf and his team. Not on politically driven.

  26. S.A.Mallal says:
    January 4th, 2008 12:50 pm

    @ whole LOTA love
    You say: ” —-when will we be able to say that ITS GETTING BETTER.”
    I say: When Mushrraf resigns!

    @ mystic
    You say: “Allah Pakistan ki Hifazat kare

  27. Dewana Aik says:
    January 4th, 2008 2:05 pm

    Its not just Electricity, Flour, Sugar, Water and Sui Gas, Pakistan is also the most dangerous place in the world according to this article;

    Why do we always top in the worst things?

  28. Nusrat says:
    January 4th, 2008 2:13 pm

    I am a Kashmiri [woman] from across the LOC, and I am writing for the first time on your excellent blog. A blog, from which I have learned many a fascinating nugget about our shared history.
    Needless to say, I, not unlike an overwhelming majority of progressive Kashmiris and other Indians feel angry and helpless at the recent events unraveling across the border.
    Besides solidarity, I would also like to offer an unsolicited piece of advice – Please rethink your Kashmir policy. Indeed, No Kashmir policy would be optimal, if you ask me.

    ps – witnessing the last 60 years of south asian history, I can’t help but feel that we, kashmiris, may have lucked out by “falling into Indian hands”.

  29. Rahim Khan says:
    January 4th, 2008 2:27 pm

    Why KBD or any other dams cannot be built on river Sindh (Indus) anymore, best understood by looking at the viewpoints of each of the provinces, MQM threatened mushy it will drop her support for him, if he insisted on KBD construction.

  30. Abdul Basit Suhail says:
    January 4th, 2008 2:44 pm

    I am from Mirpur Azad Kashmir.The city whose people sacrificed their land & homes TWICE for Mangla Dam’s constriction & up-raising .
    In 1967 when dam was first made ir was promised that
    Mirpur City will get free of cost electricity .But that promise was not fulfilled .
    Azad Kashmir gets electricity from Tarbila Dam and the power generation from Mangla is used in Karachi & Islamabad.
    Even having its own dam AJK is having 17 Hours daily load-shedding.

  31. Khan says:
    January 4th, 2008 3:25 pm


    @Rahim Khan
    You say:

  32. Ahmad R. Shahid says:
    January 4th, 2008 3:27 pm

    Musharraf’s KBD was just a ploy to divert the people’s attention from other issues. If he really wanted to avert the future power crisis he would have gone for less controvercial projects. By raising the KBD issue he just wanted people to think that he was for progress while his opponents were just against development. What a stupid idea! But once he started getting signals from his ally, the dreaded MQM, that he might loose power over KBD he immediately backtracked.

  33. Moiz says:
    January 4th, 2008 3:32 pm

    I wonder when we will learn to stop relying on the inefficient govt for all our needs. We the Pakistanis have to come up with new and innovative ideas on our household level to combat the load shedding problem.
    It is not only Pakistan but almost the whole world that is feeling the shortage of power and energy to keep the machines and the world running.
    Solar energy is one alternative that can be used to combat the problem. Solar panels that can meet the energy requirements of a household atleast during the daytime should come in vogue and Pakistani enterprenuers should try and venture into this possible very lucrative field.
    Load shedding is not going to go away unless we do something about it.
    Solar energy has high installation costs but then again it pays itself back in due course. So when we install a solar panel for meeting our energy needs we are doing all of us some good. We are helping reduce carbon emmisions. We are helping reduce line losses. We are helping reduce our dependence on the national grid that is prone to all sorts of acts of sabotage in this country. And to top this all we are doing this all for free eventually.

  34. January 4th, 2008 3:36 pm

    with this comment of ARY that
    “Sub Acha hai”
    everything is fine
    it is our country’s legacy and I am not proud of it.

  35. Ahmad R. Shahid says:
    January 4th, 2008 3:41 pm


    You are absolutely right not every problem can be left to the government alone and we as Pakistanis would I think learn this lesson sooner rather than later, since Pakistani government is too inefficient in governance. And things, which are taken for granted in the rest of the world, specially in the developed West, have to be fought for in Pakistan as a matter of routine.

    Also the good news is that technology has the habit of becoming cheap over time. Electric generators are finding their way into the urban households thanks to the inefficiency of the government power companies. With people buying more generators, the generators would become cheaper and cheaper. In fact there is another neighboring market in Afghanistan, which has also been facing governance issues over the last few decades. Combined Pakistan and Afghanistan can become a huge market for the elctric generators.

    With the oil hitting $100 per barrel, other technologies, such as the solar cells, might become cheaper and people might start buying them in greater number. That would further decrease the prices of this technology further increasing their affordability, further decreasing prices and so on and so forth. In fact solar energy is expected to employ 20 million people worldwide by 2020. If any young people out there want to make a good living in the next few decades, solar energy might be the field for them.

  36. Parvez says:
    January 4th, 2008 3:53 pm

    You guys just don’t understand my name sake Parvaiz Musharraf, so let me give some inkling of his thinking.He only has only best for people in his heart. Too much atta and chenee is not good for the health since it leads to diabetes and heart problems. This thing about gas and electricity makes you soft. Really he does want you to be soft, fat and happy. He wants you to be tough as nails. He does not want to waste all your time on blog writing. Load shedding gives you an opportunity to get out, breathe some fresh air and watch the sunset.

    Now pay attention to all the good he has done. He put some the best army officer in all important government organization to fix the things and don’t let me forget to mention brilliant banker he enticed from world biggest bank to put Pakistan on road to growth. His old bank is in big trouble after he left. This guy knows all about the complex workings of international finance. Given an opportunity, Tatas would bend down to his feet. If you think you are smart, tell me about TD economics of Prof Milton Friedman. Our banker ex-PM knows it backward and forward. You guys just don’t appreciate good things and now I can’t put everything in black and white.
    Oh yes, the population problem, I could write volumes, putting Malthus to shame. After listening to his supporters, I presume that Pakistan has excess population in the range of 170 million, give or take a few.
    Keep in mind, the three A’s of Pakistan. If America is in bad mood, and army is floundering, Allah is still there and nobody knows his plans.

  37. temporal says:
    January 4th, 2008 4:01 pm

    s a mallal


    fine, but you did not reply

  38. temporal says:
    January 4th, 2008 4:07 pm

    owais you mentioned 33% of the power supply comes from hydel sources

    can you comment on this please?

    he also has a follow up article

    is silting as bad and can anything be done?

    would appreciate a comment by you or by anyone who knows the subject

  39. January 4th, 2008 5:22 pm

    Love your site. Your information is so current. The pics are great. Kindly visit my site also

    Pakistani infrastructure needs> Build Pakistan up as a bulwark against American enemies

  40. Ahmad R. Shahid says:
    January 4th, 2008 6:16 pm

    It is to be seen what businesses would thrive under the given circumstances:

    1) candle making, retailing
    2) generator manufacturing, retailing, marketing, branding
    3) oil lamps

    I wonder if there is any big market for these products in the world. If there is then Pakistan might become one of the leading exporters in the world and through the foreign echange earned could invest in the power sector to end the load-shedding.

  41. January 4th, 2008 6:29 pm

    @awais mughal and many others (including the so-called Double Shah aka Salman Shah):

    It is amazing how people can distort the glaring facts in order to hide the truth.
    1. Kot Addu Power plant is multi-fuel power plant , and can operate on three different fuel sources namely Natural Gas, Furnace Oil and High Speed Diesel. It has 5 units and can produce 1600MW power.
    2. For God’s sake stop blaming Allah for the energy crisis in Pakistan,

    there is not much WAPDA can do in present circumstances when 33% of the power for Pakistan comes from Hydel sources

    , the current power production of Pakistan does not meet the requirements. There is a straight shortfall of more than 3000 MW , it is already estimated that there will be shortfall of 5300MW by 2010. And you are bold enough to blame Nature for that.

    With last week

  42. readinglord says:
    January 4th, 2008 6:33 pm

    Zakoota says:

    “Again I

  43. Owais Mughal says:
    January 4th, 2008 7:35 pm

    @temporal, i don’t know where the guy got his silting figures of 200 million tonnes a year. If true, then he is right, yes it cannot be cleared by dredging alone. WAPDA does perform some dredging in the lakes of Mangla and Tarbela.

    Mangla’s life was estimated at 60 years. It is getting close to it fast so nowadays its capacity is getting increased by making the levies higher.

  44. Owais Mughal says:
    January 4th, 2008 7:43 pm

    Kot Addu plant is multi-fuel but not all the fuel types are used at the same time. Sui Gas is primarily used. In case of disrupted gas supply, it takes time to switch to other fuel types.

  45. Faraz says:
    January 4th, 2008 7:59 pm

    I agree 100% with those who think people are to blame. Yes the fault also lies with the govt too. They aren’t the best group. But apparently neither are the high level and mid level officials. Down to low level workers. Just look at what happened last week. People burned down banks, train stations, cars etc. And then people complain about high prices and lack of electricity. They don’t have a shred of common sense. Another proof of the fact that we are all at fault: look at the support Benazir got. She probably would have been elected despite her two miserable terms in office. The entire country is to blame. You can single out Musharraf if you like, but that’s just naive.

  46. Ebrahim says:
    January 4th, 2008 8:01 pm

    This last video of poem by Faraz on Karachi is really very powerful. Thank you for posting.

  47. Sridhar says:
    January 4th, 2008 9:43 pm


    Are there any incentives for wind-powered stations in Pakistan? It is a potential quick solution to the problem of power deficits.

    Wind power stations have a very short gestation period, can be entirely in the private sector and can be highly decentralized. By merely facilitating wind power farms (and without any significant financial incentives), the state of Tamil Nadu in India has added a very large wind power capacity over the last decade, so much so that if it were a country, it would be the fourth largest wind power producer in the world (after Germany, the US and Spain in that order). Wind power contributes to about 20% of its power demand and is entirely in the private sector.

    Something similar is potentially feasible in Pakistan.

  48. Sridhar says:
    January 4th, 2008 10:07 pm

    A small correction in my earlier post. Tamil Nadu’s wind capacity was 28.9% of the total in 2006 (2898MW out of 10000MW). It would have only gone up since then since wind capacity continues to get added, while there has been no significant addition to thermal, hydel or nuclear power capacity in this period. The 20% figure I gave in my last post was thus outdated.

    Tamil Nadu’s power generation capacity was just a little bit smaller than that of Pakistan in 2006 (10000MW vs. Pakistan’s 11000 MW). And I would expect Pakistan to have substantial wind potential, both in the Arabian coast and the vast plains of Balochistan and also perhaps in the mountainous regions of the north. Thus, Tamil Nadu’s experience with wind power is not irrelevant to the power issues in Pakistan.

  49. Owais Mughal says:
    January 4th, 2008 10:59 pm


    Somehow I am not very excited by wind power; atleast not yet. To be Efficient the wind turbine has to constantly rotate. If it keeps rotating at a certain speed then it is fine and it keeps feeding to the grid, BUT when there is no wind, wind turbines actually take power out of the grid because power has to be supplied to the customer at a constant 50Hz/60Hz frequency, and to keep this AC frequency constant from a stalled wind turbine, power is actually consumed by the system itself.

    Therefore in a cluster of wind turbines, not all turbines move all the time and it makes the system ineffcient. The other day on NPR i heard that power from wind source is less than 25% efficient (un-confirmed number).

    Wind energy is the cleanest though and for environment it is the best choice.

    Govt of Pakistan has somehow not gotten involved in wind power yet. Govt always goes for big projects/big dams. private sector or decentralized power concept is just catching up in Pakistan. There are a few and small industrial power plants (e.g Sitara Textiles) who put their excess or sometimes all generation into National grid. but their generation is not more than 150 MW per plant.

    For some reason investment has not gone in wind power in Pakistan.

    Yes there is a great potential for wind power all across 700 km of coastal belt BUT some scientific wind survey is needed. I am just basing my claim from the personal experience of always finding Pakistan coastal area very windy and breezy, especially in monsoon months. In Winters though, the wind dies down.

  50. faraz siddiqui says:
    January 4th, 2008 11:26 pm

    Instead of playing blame game, we should think about solution of problem. We should ask our contesting political parties about their strategy for electric power.
    I will like to ask foloowing questions

    1) Will they support mega dams like KBD or smaller dams? What is their position on Kala Bagh.?

    2) Will they allow private parties to take more active part if electric power.

    3) Are they are going to incresae cost of electricity or will like to take financial burden on state.

    4). How they are going to budget electric power projects.

    The problem is unless we ask intelligent questions with our parties, nothing good will come out in future too.

  51. Zahid says:
    January 5th, 2008 12:57 am

    Solar energy would be the best solution for a country like Pakistan. We need to work on this idea more and make it cheaper and long lasting. So what if it is not successful so far, we can always improve things.

  52. Arsalan Zaidi says:
    January 5th, 2008 11:43 am

    Musharraf is just the face. He represents a segment of society who keep their people in power to protect their interests. Its the mentality which is main problem of Pakistan. I don’t expect much change even Musharraf is removed.

    Its better to spend your time and energy on new sources of energy. May be wind or solar. Malaysia is using palm oil as energy source, Brazil use fossil fuel. We need to think what is our strength and try to convert it into an energy source. Can we think about that?

  53. S.A.Mallal says:
    January 5th, 2008 12:33 pm

    We have so far discussed many causes for our present situation. If you really think about it isn’t our rapid population growth the ROOT CAUSE of our ailment.
    No matter how many roads we construct, no matter how many dams we build, no matter how many thermal power stations we set up we will always fall short of our requirement of water, power and food etc because of the unplanned population growth. If somehow we can solve this problem all our other problems will disappear.

  54. Mudassar says:
    January 5th, 2008 12:52 pm

    Hi Wasim Arif,

    Thanks for your concern and for your patriotism. To be honest I can

  55. January 5th, 2008 4:56 pm

    Owais Mughal,
    Has anyone in Pakistan examined the feasibility of converting garbage to gas/electricity? I know that the technology has been available for some time in the West. IMO, our cities (at least) have huge amounts of trash and there is potential to kill two birds with one stone. Clean the streets while, at the same time, use the garbage to generate energy.

    The converted electrical power may not be a huge amount, but it might be enough to supply the needs of neighboring small village/towns in the outlying areas (e.g. Gadap, Hub, etc. in Karachi). Also the need for collection, transportation, and preparatory processing may generate some jobs for the locals. Another advantage is that the supply of raw fuel is never seasonally dependent (thanks to our propensity for waste :-)).

  56. Owais Mughal says:
    January 5th, 2008 5:19 pm

    Viqar Sahib, domestic waste has been used in building mini-bio-gas plants which can possibly be used to generate electricity but with low efficiency. The amount of effort that goes in collecting trash, sorting it, storing it and ensuring a constant dependable supply to generate bio-gas which in turn could run electricity generators is a huge effort which requires planning at higher scale. No i have not heard of such effort at govt scale yet.

    Collecting solid waste from cities in organized way is a huge undertaking with political pit-falls. I remember in early 1990s, Karachi’s city government started a ‘TRASH TRAIN’ which used to collect trash from all over the city (using Karachi circular railway) track and then dump it near the Steel Mill at a siding especially created for Karachi’s solid waste disposal. Believe it or not, it became a political issue with representatives from Karachi East complaining against Karachi city dumping its trash in their area (and may be rightly so) b/c the project was started without removing concerens of Karachi east. The trash train project got abandoned within months of its service.

    In Zia-ul-Haq time, i do remember govt promoting local bio-gas plants at home or street level which could replace Sui Gas. You may remember the PTV campaign for bio-gas plants in early or mid 1980s. I never heard of anyone building such plants in city areas where Sui Gas was available.

  57. January 5th, 2008 5:49 pm

    “The amount of effort that goes in collecting trash, sorting it, storing it and ensuring a constant dependable supply to generate bio-gas which in turn could run electricity generators is a huge effort which requires planning at higher scale. No i have not heard of such effort at govt scale yet”.

    Honestly, I feel that this is an idea worth pursuing. I had broached the subject with my cousin in Karachi, who was making a strong pitch for me to return to Pakistan, during my visit there in 2004. When I said that I would be interested in setting up an NGO to collect and transport waste from the city, he threw up his hands and told me that I would not get the permission to do so from the municipal authorities.

    I do not wish to go into the circular back and forth we went thru, but I dropped the subject and that was that.

    I have heard of this gentleman in Pak by the name of Q. Isa Daudpota who is, apparently, into environmental issues. Do you know him or have any contact information about him? I was wondering if he could help?

  58. Umar Akbar says:
    January 5th, 2008 6:20 pm

    An excellent article by Darwaish.

    There was a time, not so long ago, when most people thought that Musharraf was the best thing that had ever happened to Pakistan, just as there are people who even now think that Benazir Bhutto and/or Nawaz Sharif are the most amazing personalities to have ruled this country in recent years. It is an irony of fate that the names most often associated with blatant corruption, nepotism, incompetence, dismal governance, and all-round foot-in-mouth variety of cluelessness, are the same names that are laying claim to Pakistan’s immediate political future.

    Musharraf had a once-in-a-lifteime, God-gifted opportunity to set the country right; let history judge him and his actions. To paraphrase, “He entered politics with a brilliant future, and came out with a terrible past.”

    “Success has many fathers, but failure is an orphan.”

  59. Sajid says:
    January 6th, 2008 3:33 am


    The CDGK has signed a MOU with some Japanese company to covert the Buffalo refuse into electricity. I have read the feasibilty report and it states that cattle colony (bhens colony) in Karachi produces enough buffalo refue (gobar) to produce 50MW of electricity. I do not know what happened to this project.

    @ faraz

    ‘How they are going to budget electric power projects.’

    for KESC, if they take out the surcharge and additional surcharge from the bills, the per unit cost of electricity is good enough to fund any big project. The truth is that in our electricity bills the actual cost of electricity is much less than the taxes imposed on them. Merge all the taxes in the per unit cost. But than it will reduce the BIG money goes into our government pockets as taxes.

    @ Owais

    Your statement that it takes 10 years to build a big power plant is correct in case of hydal power. A thermal generation palnt can be constructed in less than three years. It is all a matter of money. The 600MW power plant in Riyadh KSA is built in less than 2 years. I am a witness as I worked on this project. But than Saudis has all sort of money to buy comfort for their people.

  60. Zarmina Gul says:
    January 6th, 2008 5:25 am

    The dictator and his regime has been completely unmasked now. But its late now and situation is already worse for Pakistan.

  61. Masroor says:
    January 6th, 2008 5:45 am


  62. Owais Mughal says:
    January 6th, 2008 10:27 am

    @ sajid

    I agree with your estimates on timing required to build a thermal plant

    @ Masroor

    Agreed with the power generation capacity numbers quoted in your comment’s last paragraph

  63. Rafay Kashmiri says:
    January 6th, 2008 11:13 am

    @ But Atta is still not available, it has been
    smuggled to India by whom ??

    Politicians must answer !!
    Musharraf failed again ,
    basic needs are taken away from the people
    by the Mafia on which Mushy must be having
    a thorough report, but can he to do something??

  64. Mohammad Ali Bhatti says:
    January 6th, 2008 12:34 pm

    I was watching a program on this Aatta crisis on Aaj tv in which Federal and Punjab Sec. of food were present. The President Flour Distribution Association Pakistan who was also present, said that there are handful of people who made 100 billion rupees in last 2 months after the flour crisis and ghee price increase (which they did by creating artificial shortage) .

    Sounds like a VERY profitable business to me.

  65. Aqil Sajjad says:
    January 6th, 2008 10:27 pm

    Could you please provide the source for the figures on the electricity generation capacity in the country during the elected govts and the Mush period? Thanks in advance.

  66. Masroor says:
    January 7th, 2008 2:37 am
  67. Rafay Kashmiri says:
    January 7th, 2008 9:18 am

    Darwaish Saheb,

    ” Andher Nagri , chaupat Raja ”

    Geo TV News 7 dec 08 15.00 cet

    Sikhashai of the ‘Temporary Governement’ its
    Minister of Food Prince Eisaa Jan says ,
    listen to this ,

    ‘All the Pakistanis are responsible for disappearance of
    atta from the market’

    ‘There is no shortage of (flour) atta, all the provinces
    have enough stock ‘ !!!!!!

    and then he announces 15 laks tons of wheat to be
    imported .

    Musharraf has a whole lot of jokers around him.

  68. Adnan says:
    January 7th, 2008 12:40 pm
  69. commoner says:
    January 7th, 2008 3:26 pm

    The on-going

  70. Masroor says:
    January 8th, 2008 3:20 am

    The Zia era was

  71. Samreen Tahir says:
    January 8th, 2008 8:03 am

    Situation is sad in Pakistan. Hundreds of industries have been shut down resulting in unemployment of thousands of families. Textile, steel, furnace and so many other industries are hit. And this has been mainly done as a quick fix so that they can claim that load-shedding is being managed. In long term, it will hit us badly. It seems we are being ruled by a group of shameless jokers.

    I agree with author’s message completely, you had your chance and you failed miserably. For God’s sake now just go away and give someone else a chance to fix things.

  72. Aqil Sajjad says:
    January 9th, 2008 1:59 am

    This is the unravelling of the so called economic miracle that was driven more by the post 911 benifits and unbridled consumption rather than sound economic policies.
    I expected it to happen a bit later though.

    There will be a lot of suffering due to this. The only silver lining is that it has happened while Musharraf is around, so people will rightly hold his govt responsible and hopefully start to question the assumption that military regimes in Pakistan are better at managing the economy.

  73. Shariq Maqbool Khan says:
    January 9th, 2008 5:43 am


  74. J. Yousufzai says:
    January 10th, 2008 5:23 am

    Very nicely put together. Suicide Bombing, which is another gift of 1999-2007 era, should be added to the list. It needs to be given full attention.

    If you look at the situation closely, its all part of the plan and in the best interest of a certain element/class. This chaos, law and order problems, people deprived of basic facilities and hence too busy to think about democracy or anything else, Pakistan to remain a national security state rather social welfare state and all the other issues. All this together helps non-democratic forces to keep control over the resources.

    This country seems to be in a mess that no one can clean.

  75. MQ says:
    January 10th, 2008 9:53 am

    As if power, gas and flour shortages were not enough, Pakistan is now going to be hit with yet another shortage. Cotton! Cotton picking in the country is almost over and the yield is estimated to be less than 10 million bales against a target of nearly 15 million. A shortfall of 50 per cent! This means the country will have to import more cotton to feed its textile mills. Also, there will be less cottonseed, which means less cooking oil as well as less animal feed (cottonseed, after it is crushed, is used as cattle feed).

    Misfortunes don

  76. Ahmad R. Shahid says:
    January 10th, 2008 10:26 am

    I hope that these battalions of misfortunes spell good for the long-term conditions of the country. But they can’t be ensured unless Musharraf resigns and hands over the reigns of power to a care taker government comprising of major and minor parties with all hues of political spectrum represented in it.

    What Salman Shah’s recent statement means that the government cares little about all that is going wrong and might also transfer the high prices or petroleum products to the consumers since the government finds it difficult to spare 14 billion rupees per month in the shape of subsidies.

    Perhaps if the defence budget is reduced, and the perks and priviledges of the Armed Forces personnel are reduced to the bare minimum the government might find resources to help the poor of this country. But sounds like a tall order for the military that is too drunk with power and money.

  77. Mohammad Usman Jamali says:
    January 10th, 2008 3:05 pm

    @Ahmed R Shahid:
    I totally agree with your comment. Now when we are a nuclear power, there is no need at all to keep such a large military force. Military takes away more than 65% of our budget and if you also add indirect benefits then the % grows even larger. You can well imagine how much competitive edge army welfare trust or fauji foundation have over normal civilian players in the market.

    I think that time has come to reduce number of soldiers to atleast one third. Its better to have a smaller, more efficient army than a large which becomes a burden on a poor country like Pakistan. Welfare of people is more important then regional superiority race.

    While we have atom bomb, India would never attack, and why should they anyways? The money saved by reducing army to 1/3 can be used for so many things Pakistanis desperately need like clean drinking water, education, housing, electricity. Even petrol prices can be brought down with spending a small chunk and we all know it will bring all prices down too.

    However, it is really a tall order for the military that is too drunk with power and money.

  78. QADIR says:
    January 10th, 2008 3:47 pm

    This is a very powerfully written essay. It is honest and heartfelt. We are in terrible times and we need words of inspiration like this. I hope everyone will read the second half of this and remember that.

    Important things you say that we must all remember:

    “Violence is never an argument. It is a verdict. There is nothing more pitiful than a society that

  79. Wajahat Munir says:
    January 11th, 2008 6:35 am

    These are the issues that needs to be highlighted more. Roti price has gone up to 5 rs. Can you imagine that 50 rs are required just to buy plain Roti for a family of 10. Make it another 50 rs if they are having something to eat Roti with. For two time meal a day (NO breakfast), one needs to earn atleast 6000/month. How many people eart that much money, I think everyone here is smart enough to knows that.

    Forget about health, education, utility bills, shelter, just getting a two time meal is almost impossible for poor these days. Yet, there are people who have made more than 100 billion rs in just 40-45 days from the ongoing Aatta and Ghee crisis. May be we should ask our government to prepare a monthly budget for an ordinary family.

  80. Shariq Maqbool Khan says:
    January 11th, 2008 7:52 am

    @usman Jamali

    I agree that Pakistan must reduce the number of active duty soldiers. The time when great Empires used to have large armies has long been gone. Now is the time to have a very dynamic multipurpose and functionaly independent army. The new army must be capable of delaing with the latest challanges, most important of them are internal e.g. gureilla warfare, terrorism etc. The same group must also be capable of performing duties related to peace mission and peace keeping.
    unfortunatley Pakistan has not received any military doctrine after 1965 war from its western friends. During Ayub years, when pakistan was a close ally of U.S, the newer doctrine of “abundant firepower” was adopted. Tjis was followed in the 1965 war and the reslut was amazing. Aid is another thing but having a complete new military doctrine for a changing world is an altogether different thing. there has been very little attempt and reserach in defining a new role for the Army in rapidly changing world. The time has come when we have to incorporte moderrn concepts in forming the future military force. our army needs to be less in number, more indegenious and must be capable to perfom in more than one role.

  81. Ahmad R. Shahid says:
    January 11th, 2008 12:41 pm

    @Shariq Maqbool Khan

    Yours is a very well argued contention. But I don’t agree with you on one point. Why do our Western friends, if they really are our friends, need to give us any doctrine. Its for us to decide what is good for us. And I hope with the barrage of criticism on the military sooner or latter, enough pressure would build around the military to reform itself.

  82. Najma Bilgrami says:
    January 11th, 2008 5:03 pm

    You have missed out one very important crisis. The ever growing foreign intervention crisis. Even Hamid Karzai is telling us what to do and how. I think US is suggesting a joint UK-US force to look after Pakistan’s nuclear assets. Our foreign office and Musharraf keep on saying that they would not allow any foreign forces to take any action against militants. As if they are asking our permission. Hah!

  83. January 12th, 2008 3:12 am

    An encouraging piece of news about solid waste management. The city of Karachi is signing a contract with a Chinese firm which, eventually, hopes to generate electricity from this source.

  84. Faraz Haider says:
    January 12th, 2008 2:35 pm

    Darwaish Sahab,

    An excellent and timely article. Situation is not improving indeed.

    More on flour crisis:
    tiny url

  85. Owais Mughal says:
    January 13th, 2008 9:13 pm

    Today there is a news that Karachi city govt has signed a 25-year long deal for a power plant which will produce electricity from waste. Initially the production will be 50MW from 1000 tonnes of solid waste/day. Later it could be enhanced to 560MW from 10000 tonnes of waste/daily. Details here

  86. Darwaish says:
    January 14th, 2008 11:49 am

    Thanks Owais. Brilliant. This is the kind of project we need to invest more and more in. If this is successful, just imagine the benefits. I think Karachi City Govt deserves full appreciation for coming up with such a wonderful way of power generation.

  87. Owais Mughal says:
    January 14th, 2008 12:38 pm

    Darwaish, i’ll keep my fingers crossed. Right now it is more like a political statement coming from a political party. We’ll see if the project actually sees light of the day. It will require a long term commitment from the governments that will follow in next 10-15 years. Sometimes the projects started by one city govt get abandoned by next. e.g. previous Karachi govt planned for a magnetically-levitated train in the city. That project is now never heard of etc etc. Previous govt planned for North-South Corridor I mass-transit and current govt is going for signal-free East-West corridors. Both projects are needed for the city but my point is the priority of projects shift when Govts change.

    On paper yes; producing electricity from waste is the ideal project. It got me excited and hence i shared the news. but at present i remain skeptical for its future.

  88. Ahmad R. Shahid says:
    January 14th, 2008 2:20 pm

    Power plants using waste as fuel should only be tried if they are cheaper than other power generation methods. I don’t know if I am correct but a long time back I had read that the power generation cost is minimum using the nuclear reactors. Can any body shed any light on that? If they are cheaper we need to build more of them and also allow the private sector to build ones as well. Currently its either KANUPP or PAEC which are running the reactors. We need to bring more players into it, specially from the private sector.

    But I think there are other companies that are using other methods to generate electricity. Right after I finished my Electrical Engineering I was offered a job in a company working with Philipps on wind power generation. But I didn’t join because of low pay. I wonder what happened to them. But the point is that since long companies are organizations are using alternative ways of generating power in Pakistan.

  89. Fahim says:
    January 14th, 2008 2:53 pm

    By the way, I came across the information below today. It reveals the elitist mindset and the misery it causes (a Pakistani-Indian curse).

  90. Darwaish says:
    January 14th, 2008 3:07 pm

    Owais, I totally agree with you and share your concerns too. There is definitely a big IF and lets just hope that for once, our decision makers think about the future of this country. We do have very serious problem of garbage and waste material in large cities of Pakistan and a project like can help clean the cities too. I wish we had (non-political) pressure groups here in Pakistan like in other parts of the world. It is our collective job to keep the pressure on government to carry on with this exciting idea. We must NOT let this project fail.

    @Ahmed R. Shahid:
    I also read somewhere that nuclear energy is quite cheap once the plant is functional. But there are lots of other issues. Like the setup cost which is very high, the technology issues, security, taking care of nuclear waste and the most important that nuclear plants do not generate large amount of energy as compared to other power sources. Their capacity to generate power is quite low. Perhaps, an expert in nuclear energy or an engineer like Owais can throw some light on this specific issue.

  91. Owais Mughal says:
    January 14th, 2008 5:06 pm

    This interesting cartoon appears in today’s Jang. To produce electricity from solid waste in Karachi, a contract has been given to a Chinese company. The Chinese company eventually plans to collect 10,000 tonnes of solid waste from the city and provide it to a power plant site which will produce electricity from it. Here is how a Jang cartoonist sees this:

  92. January 15th, 2008 6:56 am

    Very interesting discussion going on here. I am glad that instead of useless political crap, people are engaged in productive and useful discussion for a change.

    Darwaish is right actually. Even in US only 20% of the total electricity required is produced by nuclear plants. It is definitely not the way for a developing country like Pakistan.

    Here is the link for those of you interested in knowing more about nuclear energy in USA.

    I second the idea of pressure groups. It can help in keeping the pressure on future governments

  93. Ahmad R. Shahid says:
    January 15th, 2008 1:49 pm

    Nuclear energy is, and in my reckoning would be one of the key sources of energy in the future. If the USA only produces 20% of its energy using nuclear reactors, France gets 70% from it. Even Britain is re-evaluating its policy on nuclear energy. Both China and India are investing heavily in it as well. Yet when it comes to Pakistan or Iran the entire western media start writing on the “dangers” of nuclear power. We need nuclear power as much as any body else and even more.

  94. Owais Mughal says:
    January 15th, 2008 11:23 pm

    Last year we had a post on ‘bijli bachaao’ campaign. May be this is the correct time to revisit the post. It is here

  95. dr waqas says:
    January 17th, 2008 10:19 am

    We are passing through the worst circumstances during the period after 1999. It clear to every sensible men . we are also ourselves weak alongwith our government (which is more responsible). It is not a way to assassinate a great leader who wanted to deploy the democracy like her father. The govt. seem to be weak. too weak. we should rise and brought revolution inorder to SAVE PAKISTAN.

  96. Aks Madhim says:
    January 17th, 2008 1:30 pm

    No apologies for stating the obvious…Only one way out..
    Democracy…Democracy…Democracy.. no matter how fractured…The whole country has been sacrificed to save the kursi of one man. Pata nahin in fauji dictators say kab jaan chootay gee…

  97. Anwar ul haq says:
    January 18th, 2008 11:58 am

    if u need see pakistan prosper in econemy as well as in politics u should free media from all circumstaces which now estabelish from all those person which think about always own purposes, not for people of pakistan as well as for pakistan prosperity
    And U should free judicial and courts from politicion and resestain the judges wich are also lligible now
    Ploitician should think about the prosperty of pakistan not our self.thx

  98. January 25th, 2008 2:16 pm


  99. assad says:
    February 1st, 2008 2:31 am

    The article presented by Darwish represent the bitter truth we are facing in our country. These all happened and are happening still, are due to the blind trust of General Musharaf on its cabinet. Did President was unaware of the situation going on in the country? if this is the case he does not have any interest in the country’s matter. If he was knowing each and every thuth why he was and is scilence. He is equilly involved with the paracites in drawing the blood of poor nation. Now the final report is almost ready and will be presented to the President. What acton he takes against the smuglers and zakhira anodzs will prove the nature, sincerity and good will he keeps about Pakistan and Pakistani nation

  100. aida says:
    February 4th, 2008 4:07 am


  101. Nadeem Butt says:
    February 13th, 2008 2:53 pm

    energy revolution is needed…
    lack of energy is first step towards anarchy, exploitation and finally civil war…

  102. bhawan dass says:
    March 11th, 2008 6:14 am

    hi i think we are responsible for that when the time of voting we don’t take care that to which person we are going the vote so that such type of leaders will always be there.

  103. March 11th, 2008 8:26 am

    What Richard Armitage might have said 5-6 years ago, our beloved country looks fast falling into that category i.e ‘the stone age’. The worst, however, has yet to come as no sincere planning to avert the energy crisis is in sight. According to government estimates Pakistan will be needing 165,000 mega watts of electricity by the year 2025! Do we see any tangible effort there? Right now the demand and supply gap is of around 3000MW what will happen then? The only solution is to try all the acceptable solutions at the same time whether it is building of dams for hydle power or thermal power or wind power or biofuels or coal power or nuclear energy or solar energy but, first the cheapest and more feasible of them all i.e solar and wind energy. Public & private participation here is a must for our own sovereignty. Dams should be kept as a last solution because not only they create a lot of political noise but also considered globally as the things of the past besides being environmentally and ecologocally hazardous and above all, expensive though donars will be more than willing to finance any such ‘mega project’ to burden this nation with heavy loans in a bid to capitulate it before their nefarious designs. One should pray to the Almighty for the new government to be able to cope up with heavy baggage of crisis they being inherited.

    ATP should also invite suggestions on the trafic menace in Karachi which is turning into a nightmare for Karachiites. day after day.

  104. aliraza says:
    March 29th, 2008 11:08 pm

    I would like o tell u that it is the time of solving the crises by get togeter with a common aim progress of pakistan. If we not work together and against each other than we ere far behind in the race of progress . So it is the time of working with the authorities honestly. it is the resonsibility of our leaders make the policies which is effective and also make the progressive management plan.

  105. Amber says:
    April 3rd, 2008 12:41 pm


    Wind power is a good idea. We could then produce the power which pakistan apparently requires ( from your posts that seems to be 11,000 MW/day).

    Hm, correct me if im wrong but WAPDA can do much more than what they do at the moment in terms of improving water for example, that reaches people in bad conditions which then cause TB and malaria and people die! for example, The rivers in SWAT are being polluted and the villagers etc drink that water because it is the only source they have access to, plus the fact that some people who have no jobs and need a living in the SWAT valley put poison in to the waters to make the fish die and come afloat so that they can take them and sell them them/ eat them. This is poisoning the water which is killing human life, and as far as i am aware, there are no rules or regulations put in to place to prevent this.

    There may be many problems in Pakistan, but i believe that there are many solutions to them as well, if only the populaton would stir up the courage and apply those solutions. Worst of all really is the fact that our government is useless. We’ve been independent since 1947, that’s what?…61 years of independence and look at us, and then look at India, who gained Independence at the same time. From the very beginning they preached self sufficiency and they are pretty okay compared to us… but what exactly have we preached? what have we to actually be proud of? ( ok, so winning the cricket world cup was great mashAllah, but that’s about it).

    However, i know there are good things in pakistan too. There is slow- extremely slow development and progress being made- but it is so slow that well, practically unseen and unheard of.

    That’s all my view, feel free to disagree. Knowledge has no limits, therefore i may not have highlighted even half as much as i could have if i had known more, and anyone of you guys may know what i don’t , so all is good.



  106. Imtiaz Alam Sheikh says:
    April 4th, 2008 9:21 am

    I kinda agree with Amber here.

    Another option could be to replace traditional bulbs with energy savers in all big cities. This can fix the loadshedding problem immediately and save us thousands of MW of electricity. Government can strike a deal with large energy saver producers and I think it can be done at the cost of installing one medium scale power plant (which takes years to build mind you)

  107. April 23rd, 2008 4:53 pm

    Pakistan is a fast developing country and so is the population growth. To meet the challenges there should have been put some brakes on the population rise but no one could teach or tell because there are many problems being a muslim state and Mullahs do come along and say its not Islamic to have birth control. There was enough electric when some circles were saying that they should sell it to India. Where is that electric surplus gone? Some people in Pakistan do not want to pay their bills. They steel electric with KUNDA tricks and that is costing the teasury in billions. Some people can say that President Musharraf is to be blame but that is not true. He did his job with honesty and made Pakistan very strong both financially and militarily. So many mega projects are completed and Pakistan is known all over the world on world map and President Musharraf should get credit for it. OIL PRICE TODAY IS $100 pb and it must have effect on the economy of countries like Pakistan which got no OIL to meet their needs, only a few per cent is produced which is nothing comparing with the needs of the country. There is Wheat shortage all over the world. Australia has got shortage and one time they used to export a lot but with the drought hit Australia they had some protests lately about commodity shortages. Some people in Pakistan expect miracles from President Musharraf and that is wrong. Two previous governments of PML N and PPPP had stolen billions dollar s from the treasury and no one would lend a penny to Pakistan. To revive that economy who should get the credit its President Musharraf and his team. New government just came in and are blaming all the shortages to previous government whereas its not true. WITH THE OIL PRICES GOING $100 PB EVERYTHING IS GONE UP NO MATTER WHICH COUNTRY YOU LIVE IN. SOME COUNTRIES ARE ALREADY FACING FEMINE. NO FOOD FOR MANY BUT LUCKILY IN PAKISTAN THERE IS NOT THAT KIND OF SITUTION. PAKISTAN STILL WILL BE EXPORTING THEIR RICE TO THE WORLD. IN A SHORT PERIOD OF TIME COUNTRY WILL COME OUT OF POWER CRISES AND FOOD SHORTAGES WILL ALSO BE DEALT WITH. KEEP SMILING AND BE HAPPY THERE IS ALWAYS A GREEN LIGHT IN THE TUNNEL.

  108. May 5th, 2008 8:20 am


    here i disagree with mohammed akram,because many tv shows are the source of creating awareness among people on family planning being admit that we are a muslim state.

    now,suggestion every one has a right to disagree with me,but according to my point of view flour crises are just because of our government laziness,and carelessness.because itis not that the of international level,prices are rising because of our neglegence,if we first think of our homeland than every one afterwards how can problem can’t solve.we should stop exporting our basic necessities,first serve our people than others.give incentives to farmers so that they increase interest in producing more and more.

  109. Mahvish Parvez says:
    June 9th, 2008 1:49 pm

    It is good to be optimistic; but havent we been optimistic about Pakistan for long? Our ‘optimism’ hasnt pais off. I beg to differ from Mohd. Akram’s comment that Musharraf’s government should not be blamed. I think the article is putting the exact picture in front of us. What has Musharraf’s regime brought to us? Besides economic aspect, Pakistan has lost its dignity by becoming a puppet in U.S hands. Mohd. Akram said Musharraf made Pakistan strong militarily, well where are we using that military? to kill our own people? to destroy the nation itself? In the name of ‘war on terrorism’, Musharraf regime has killed a massive number of people. and what has the result been? even more extremism and intolerance!

    Financially, lets talk about that. what about our stock market collapses? what about our debts? what about currency value?

    Regarding the power crisis, well if people are stealing electricity, what has Musharraf done for that? he was the head of state, could he not have prevented it?he could have if he was not amongs them!

    Sadly, Musharraf was not different than his predecessors. I do not support any of these previous people either. These people do not lose anything. It is the people in our villages, our lower income group who suffers. and their situation has been the same- actually worse- for years now. How will these people survive in the scorching heat without electricity, water-basic needs? the rich will have generators installed- what about these people? Does Musharraf or the new government have an answer?

    August 17th, 2008 8:57 am

    The only soloutions of all the problems of pakistan is the army ruling because the peoples of Pakistan aren’t deserve Democracy.

  111. Aqil Sajjad says:
    September 11th, 2008 6:20 pm

    “It appears Mr Aqil Sajid has only referred to the article that argue

  112. Aqil Sajjad says:
    September 11th, 2008 6:21 pm

    Oops, sorry, posted in the wrong thread by mistake

  113. deadman says:
    October 15th, 2008 6:00 am

    believ or not, if we keep runing pakistan in such a way, then we have to change its name from pakistan to qaberstan ( graveyard) our only need is money and we can do any thing to get a piece of paper, we never ever tried to solve the problems but to search for alternatives, if there is load sheding we start buying generators and ups,use of debt to pay debt and etc, also wrong use of powers, lota politician, and the list goes on, the only developement i have seen so far is to name any road or investment scheme after any political leader, if this will not change one day u will see PPPP cola and PML cola and every party will have their own currency, now a days we are runing short of electricity but the electricity bill is heavier than before, what you call development or we what is management that is unable to stop the short fall but to increase the gap between demand and supply,only winter season can decrease this gap not the government nor the power companies, and i dont know why we are donating electricity to afghanisan, so people of pakistan you know every thing, you know every politician and government representator play with figures, u know pakistan is developing only in papers , its time to get up…

  114. Haris says:
    October 21st, 2008 9:59 am

    we dont want critisizm but as a pakistani we want the solution of these problems!
    we all know what crises pakistan has been faced from last 8 years but we as a nation have to find out the solution of these crisis. because critisizm is very easy but effort is very hard!!!!!

  115. October 23rd, 2008 4:18 am

    Who will be Beneficial to Pakistan Mr. Barackobama or Mr. Paul Mccain.. Share Your Views Here

  116. Saif Khan says:
    November 20th, 2008 7:53 am


    I am really impressed by your observation and way you have explained things in broad context. Now a day

  117. fariha says:
    February 10th, 2009 1:13 pm

    hi .i m realy thankfull 2 u .because my assignment topic is crisis in pakistan.
    and u help me alottttt.its realy awsome material.
    everything is quite understandable,the material ,the language etc etc
    thank u again

  118. Fahad Yousuf says:
    March 3rd, 2009 5:47 am

    Where is Pakistan going??

    One thing we all have to remember is that the problems in Pakistan can not be attributed to singular personalities. Pinning blame is something we have become VERY adept at. We are handed down bias as a hereditary tradition. We can pin all the recent crisis on Gen. Musharraf. Those before that on former leaders.

    But in reality what is going on… the so called independant media of Pakistan only care about themselves… the media. They babble on and on on THEORIES about what is going on but never address the causes.

    Us simple civilians are generally concerned only with ourselves. As deadman so aptly put it.. the focus of most people is to solve problems in the short term.. and forget the long term. But the core flaw is in how Pakistan has been governed… Ever since Pakistan was created democracy and mode of governance has just been a puppet show. People with social power were abusing it since before Pakistan and were not going to give that up just because a new state was formed. Every political family, every leader has either had ulterior motives from the very beginning or succumbed to corruption at one level or the other.

    Our people mourn those who lost their lives in the process, but never really look at the bigger picture. Racial tension.. generational gaps.. lack of trust… such factors stop any real co-operation.

    Ever since 1947, every political era in Pakistan has passed in the hunt for complete and ubiquitous control and in the end generally no one ever got complete power and the problems which were completely neglected in the meanwhile grew into monstrosities.

    The gist of the whole story which every wise person can understand is that overturning the negative momentum is not possible for INDIVIDUALS in a small timescale like a human lifetime. It requires sacrifice, each and every day. In each and every department. But the sad part is the people who should be the first to do something are generally busy catering to their own growth and are willing to stomp over those who need their help.

  119. April 20th, 2009 10:15 am

    Thank you this is my assignment topic current situation of Pakistan.

  120. Khwaja Aftab Ali, Florida, USA says:
    April 26th, 2009 3:58 pm

    FIVE REGIONAL CITIES OF PAKISTAN should be upgraded with in the provinces in the country. Regional cities of Dera Ismail Khan in NWFP, Gawadar/ Qalat in Balouchistan, Sukkar/ Larkana in Upper Sind, Jehlam/ Rawalpindi and Multan in Punjab province. These regional cities have been ignored by the federal and provincial governments although these cities have their own history, culture and languages.Dera Ismail Khan in south of Pakhtun khwa/MWFP is under seige, Multan/DG Khan in south of Punjab is next target of religious extremists,Sukkar/ Larkana is being rule by criminals, Gawadar/ Qalat is trouble some. The people of these regions have to travel to provincial capitals for every small issue and requirement of the daily life which should be provided in nearby cities. A good number of population travel to big cities for their survival to earn livelihood as the local feudal own majority land and keep the common man as their slaves. Creation of regional government and upgrading of the regional cities will save a lot of money and time of the poor people of these regions. Circuit benches of the High Courts are already working in these areas and only requirement is the additional staff of different departments involved in additional work at the provincial capitals. The concern authorities should immediately consider to upgrade the regional cities. And immediate attention should be given upgrade/build the airports,TV station, civic center, libraries,hospitals, educational institutes and investment opportunities for Pakistanis living abroad and foreign firms to create jobs in the area as majority population in rural Pakistan do not have enough resources to survive. It

  121. June 8th, 2009 11:32 pm

    hi i m safia n wanna say thankx coz it helps me to add more knowledge in ma assignment. ma asssigngment is related to the crisis due to power break down.,,,,,,,,

  122. mohammad salman jamali says:
    July 18th, 2009 7:21 am

    Proud Pakistani Scientist

    This Video clip belongs to the AAJ TV morning transmission in which Pakistans young Scientist / Graphics Designer / Scale Modeler / 3D Animator & Teacher Syed Adnan Ahmed Subzwari was invited as a Proud Pakistani.

    In this Clip he has shown his talent to the whole nation specially his research work in the free energy field. He claims that he has designed a fuel less engine which can help Govt. of Pakistan in the energy sector.

    Adnan has a very impressive background in different fields and he has received so many national & international awards

    Adnan’s e-mail

  123. mohammad salman jamali says:
    July 27th, 2009 6:29 pm
  124. biya says:
    March 23rd, 2010 9:28 am

    where is pakistan going . what is happening around us? what wil be the future of pakistan and its people? how strange it looks like……;;;
    isn’t it??????

  125. ASAD ALI BALOCH says:
    January 18th, 2011 8:28 pm

    it is very helpful.thank you

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