Consequently massive quantities of supplemental irrigation water are must for viable commercial agriculture. This water comes from our northern watershed of rivers Indus, Jhelum and Chenab.
It is already quite well known that surplus flood water of these rivers of stored is Tarbela and Mangla lakes respectively. This water feeds our extensive irrigation system during lean periods and thus supports agricultural economy of Pakistan.
The capacity of these lakes to store flood water is fast decreasing day by day because of their tremendous sedimentation. The flood waters of these rivers bring large quantities of clay, silt, sand and gravel with them and deposit these in the lake beds.
The present rate of sedimentation indicates that time may come pretty soon when these lakes will be totally filling with sediments and their capacities to store flood waters will be reduced to zero. This God, forbid, will be the end of our agriculture and our existence as a respectable and independent nation.
The only solution to keep off this catastrophe is to manage our watersheds properly. This is really a difficult challenge. Proper managements of watersheds require long term planning, massive investment and persistent efforts. It requires establishment of a suitable organization, advanced education and research, general awareness and participation of the local residents, exposure and orientation of policy makers and decision
Hence the important of well managed watersheds for our agricultural economy is established beyond any shadow of doubt.