Regional

Sea Intrusion Wreaks Havoc in the Coastal Areas of District Sujawal

By: Kamran Khamiso Khowaja
Sujawal: The rise in sea level has wreaked havoc in the coastal region of district Sujawal, rendering a large number of fishermen families homeless. The abrupt rise in sea level has caused large-scale devastation in the coastal areas as seawater has inundated several villages and settlements alongside the coastal belt of Jati Taluka stretching over 100 kilometers.
Unrestrained sea intrusion has destroyed agricultural lands, fishing areas, and ancestral coastal villages with significant historical backgrounds.
The sea in this part of the country has been eroding land for the past 30 years but this year it has become more destructive. This correspondent came to know that fertile agricultural lands in the coastal area have been submerged and the growers are facing an acute financial crisis.
As many as 40 villages of Union Council Kothi and Union Council Karmalak are under deep seawater and people have migrated to the urban areas of the province particularly Thatta, Hyderabad, and Jamshoro. However, 25 more villages in these areas are under the dire threat of inundation.
Social Activist and researcher Zahid Ishaque told this correspondent that; The devastation in the coastal region had not occurred abruptly, for the past two decades, the required amount of water was not released in the Kotri downstream that triggered sea intrusion which was causing huge destruction.
He said “When the sea gets the required amount of water it remains silent but if not it becomes destructive”.
Around 12000 people have been displaced owing to the invasion of the sea and more people are expected to suffer if unabated intrusion goes on. It was revealed by a few locals that 3.5 million acres of land in Jati, Shahbunder, Ketibunder, and Kharochan had come under seawater during the past 20 years.
An active member of the Fisherfolk Forum Ali Mohammad Themor said that it was a pitiless approach of the Federal as well as provincial governments that they did not take any measures for the rehabilitation of marooned fishermen. Adding that agriculture, fishing and livestock were major sources of earning in the coastal area and all these sources had been adversely affected on account of the water crisis and sea intrusion. People in the coastal region feared that if the situation remained the same the coastal areas of the district, Thatta, Sujawal and Badin would only be part of history. They urged authorities concerned for the due allocation of water to the coastal areas so that these areas could be saved from complete disappearance.

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