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Pakistan: dammed if you do, damned if you don’t

By Gwynne Dyer      

Prime Minister Imran Khan has launched a crowdsourcing campaign, seeking contributions from Pakistanis at home and abroad in order to get the Diamer-Bhasha Dam started. The renewed ban on Indian TV and film is really a way of getting the Pakistani public’s attention for this campaign.

Prime Minister Imran Khan's appeal for voluntary contributions to fund the big dam is mostly symbolic: you can’t raise the $12-billion needed to build the dam that way. What is not symbolic is the 2025 deadline for more water storage capacity to avoid a collapse in food production in Pakistan, writes columnist Gwynne Dyer. Photograph courtesy of Wikimedia Commons

“India is shrinking the flow of water into Pakistan,” Pakistan’s chief justice Saqib Nisar reportedly said on Saturday, renewing a ban on showing Indian TV shows and Bollywood films on Pakistani television. “They are trying to [obstruct the construction] of our dam and we cannot even close their [television] channels?”

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