Guddu Barrage: The Renowned Barrage of Sindh

Guddu Barrage is a notable barrage on the Indus River near Kashmore in the Sindh province of Pakistan. President Iskander Mirza laid the foundation-stone of Guddu Barrage on the day of 2 February 1957. The barrage was completed in the year of 1962 at a cost of 474.8 million rupees and inaugurated by Field Marshal Ayub Khan in 1962.

Guddu Barrage is utilized to control water flow in the River Indus for irrigation and flood control purposes.

It has a discharge capacity of 1.2 million cubic feet per second (34,000 m³/s). It is a gate-controlled weir type barrage with a navigation lock. The barrage has 64 bays, each 60 feet (18 m) wide. The maximum flood level height of Guddu Barrage is 26 feet (8 m). It manages and controls the irrigation supplies to 2.9 million acres (12,000 km²) of agricultural land in the Kashmore, JacobabadLarkana and Sukkur districts of Sindh province and the Naseerabad district of Balochistan province. It feeds Ghotki Feeder, Begari Feeder, Desert and Pat Feeder canals.

Modernization of Guddu Barrage

Bidding procedure for the Guddu barrage rehabilitation and modernization project has been finalized with the lowest bid offered by Descon engineering that was handed over to technical team for evaluation. Spokesperson of Sindh Irrigation Development Authority (SIDA) informed APP on the day of Saturday that an umbrella project – Sindh Barrage Improvement Project (SBIP)- was being executed for making better the reliability and safety of the barrages located on river Indus in Sindh province besides reinforcing Sindh Irrigation Department’s capacity to operate and manage the barrage.

The ECNEC passed the project worth Rs 20,241 million on March 13, 2015. Under the project rehabilitation and modernization of Guddu Barrage to be carried out in first phase with estimated cost of Rs. 1979 million and the date of completion was set June 2020. The project also includes Foreign Project Assistance (FPA) of around Rs.1780 million through International Development Association- development arm of the World Bank.

In accordance with the sources at irrigation department, the bidding procedure for construction works of the project was held the other day in which Descon engineering of Pakistan, China Harbor Guangxi Hydro electric and Cinotech Xejiang JV offered their bids and Descon was selected for offering the lowest bid in presence of concerned officials and representative of Transparency International. The bid would be evaluated by the technical team and then its report and bid documents would be forwarded to financing partner IDA for further evaluation.

The Descon already undertook mega projects such as Taunsa Barrage rehabilitation and modernization, Sukkur Barrage rehabilitation and modernization, Kacchi canal, Rainee canal and Mangla Dam raising projects. SIDA spokesman informed that primary function of the Guddu Barrage was to provide irrigation water to over one million hectares of agricultural lands in the Jacobabad, Larkana, Sukkur and the Naseerabad districts, by feeding the Ghotki Feeder and Rainee canals on the left (east) side and the Begari Sindh (BS) Feeder and Desert Pat Feeder canals on the right (west) side.

The Guddu Barrage has a span of 1,400 meters. It contains 64 gates of 18 meters each and one navigation lock with a span of 15 meters. The barrage is also used for river control and flood management. It has been designed to pass a super-flood discharge of up to 33,980 cubic metres per seconds (m3/sec). The barrage is also an important transport link across the River Indus and offers cooling water for the thermal power station at Guddu while two major gas lines cross the barrage.

The barrage was commissioned in the year of 1962 and has now seen over 50 years of active service. Sindh Barrages Improvement Project (SBIP) under which the Guddu Barrage rehabilitation will be carried out is needed due to natural ageing of the infrastructure. The rehabilitation work will eliminate possible sources of failure and potentially give the structure another 50 years of life. The SBIP will support the gate replacement works to improve the regulation and the flow of the barrage, the replacement of 64 main barrage steel gates, 25 main canal head regulator gates, and hoist gears including all mechanical and electrical equipment.

This project will also finance the independent Panel of Experts, who will review, monitor, evaluate, and assist guide the rehabilitation procedure with regards to the safety of the barrage. The primary beneficiaries include over 2.6 million people, across three million acres of irrigated land in Kashmore, Ghotki, Jacobabad, Sukkur, and Shikarpur districts of Sindh, and Nasirabad and Jafarabad districts of Balochistan, who will receive reliable supply of water while local communities in flood-vulnerable areas who will benefit from improvement in flood management and reduction in threats of embankment breaches; since the capacity of the barrage to pass flood waters will improve as well.

 

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