CHITRAL: Sarhad Rural Support Programme has launched a solar powered irrigation scheme in Chitral. The scheme was launched during a special function in Khairabad village near Drosh town.
According to organisers, the scheme financed by Programme of Economic Empowerment and Community Empowerment (PEACE) is designed to supply river water to the agricultural land at an altitude of 360 feet by solar powered water pumps.
The ChitralRiver flowing longitudinally across the valley from Baroghil to Arandu at a stretch of 340 kilometres has its topographic position in such a way that it cannot be channelised to irrigate the vast expanses of arid tracts of land.
The speakers said they were hopeful that prosperity would usher in the area if the scheme succeeded and thus, increasing the individual land holding.
SRSP Chief Executive Officer Shahzada Masoodul Mulk said gravity flow irrigation system was not possible due to its specific topography and therefore, it was decided to put the solar system to test.
“The system will be introduced in the length and breadth of Chitral, where scarcity of irrigation water is the main hurdle to agricultural development,” he said.
Mr Mulk asked the local community to support the scheme, whose success, he said, would change the fate of the farmers with small pieces of land facing water shortage.
“I will plant a sapling in the piece of land irrigated by the scheme in March next,” he said pointing towards the wasteland of Khairabad.