Irrigation project violates Bank’s safeguards policies

22 November 2004

Communities in the Sindh Valley in Pakistan have filed a claim with the World Bank Inspection Panel citing harmful effects of the 285 million dollar National Drainage Programme (NDP) on the indigenous Mallah community.

Complaints include: 30 deaths; forced displacement and involuntary re-settlement; loss of livelihoods caused by flooding, damage to crop and animal life; and environmental degradation through toxic effluents accumulation and disposal.

According to their letter “the affected people have been kept unaware of the project plans which have remained the business of bureaucrats and donors, failing to obtain informed consent or meaningful participation”.

They conclude that the Bank has ignored it’s policies and operation procedures related to resettlement and compensation.