South Asia

Published: Tuesday 31 March 2009

Privatizing power: The Sri Lankan parliament passed the controversial new electricity bill, with amendments, on March 3. The Act will curb the monopoly of the Ceylon Electricity Board (ceb) over generation, transmission and supply of electricity in the country. It was passed by 109 to 40 votes. ceb was incurring huge losses and not able to provide reasonable service. Though some ceb unions said the government was trying to privatize the power sector, experts are of the view that privatization may be necessary to make the institution viable.

Water harvesting in Pakistan: The government in the Pakistan state of Punjab has launched a programme to control the rapidly declining groundwater level in the state. A team of experts has identified 200 open areas in various parts of the city that could be used to create large water tanks to collect rainwater. The grounds would be dug deep enough to collect and store the rainwater of the surrounding areas. This would seep into the ground and recharge the declining underground water level.

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