The width of each new gate is 60ft and height is 23ft which can maintain maximum pond level of 200.5ft.
By Rehan Khan Khushik
The commissioning ceremony of replacement of six gates of historical Sukkur Barrage on Indus River and associated works on emergency basis under the World Bank-funded project and manufactured and installed by Karachi Shipyard and Engineering Works (KS&EW) was held at a local hotel here on Tuesday 31 January 2023.
The six barrage gates – No. 31, 33, 34, 35, 39 and 40, each gate weighing 50 tons have been fabricated on emergency basis under the supervision of the Consultants’ joint venture M/s Associated Consulting Engineers and M/s National Development Consultants.
The width of each new gate is 60 feet and height is 23 feet which can maintain maximum pond level of 200.5 feet.
Speaking on the occasion as the chief guest, KS&EW Managing Director Rear Admiral Salman Ilyas said that it was yet another landmark project that spoke volumes about the partnership and coordination between KS&EW and Sindh Irrigation Department.
“These gates will not only enhance the operational capability of Sukkur Barrage but will also go a long way in protecting the national assets and managing water resources of Sindh province. It will play a vital role towards achieving self-reliance in indigenous construction,” he said.
Earlier, Project Director, Project Management office, Sindh Barrages Improvement Project Ghulam Muhiuddin Mughal in his speech said, “The replacement of six barrage gates has certainly enhanced our capabilities of indigenous manufacturing of gates.”
Sukkur Barrage is the largest irrigation system of country having network of its kind in the whole world with design capacity of 1.5 million cusecs capacity initially. Later on, after model study, ten gates were closed permanently and discharge capacity of the barrage reduced to 0.9 million cusecs, but it passed 1.2 million cusecs in previous supper floods.
He said that Sukkur Barrage is of vital economic and irrigation importance for Sindh to irrigate 3.2 million hector land under its command, 25 percent of total canal irrigated land in the country and 70 percent of the Sindh’s entire command land and is considered to be life line for Sindh, which was constructed in 1932 and has completed 91 years.
He said that all the main barrage gates were replaced in 1986 to 1992. He said that feasibility study was conducted by M/s Atkinson, ACE Associate Consultant Engineers and National Development Consultants’ joint venture from 2011 to 2017 and rehabilitation of the Sukkur barrage was proposed.
He said that failure of gate number 39 and misalignment in the hoist assembly along with five more gates considered were as vulnerable.
Mughal further said that in this regards, panel of experts has advised to replace these vulnerable gates instead of rehabilitation.
Chief Engineer Sukkur Barrage Sardar Ali Shah in his address said that Sukkur Barrage is the largest irrigation system of country having network of its kind in the whole world with design capacity of 1.5 million cusecs capacity initially. Later on, after model study, ten gates were closed permanently and discharge capacity of the barrage reduced to 0.9 million cusecs, but it passed 1.2 million cusecs in previous supper floods.
He said that main problems of the barrage were excessive silt entry in right bank canals. He said that from 1952 to 1956 repair work of arches work was carried out; from 1958 to 1966 cracks in arches were repaired. He said that during 2018, a crack developed in gate number 39 along with five other gates, which have been replaced by Karachi Shipyard under SBIP.
In his briefing Mehmood Ali, General Manager KS&EW apprised that in June 2019 a contract was signed with Irrigation department for replacement of six gates and associated works i.e. rehabilitation of Tug Boat, Caisson, Pontoon, Gantry crane. As per the contract, the gates were completely manufactured in the KS&EW facility at Karachi and gate material ASTM A-572 Grade 50 procured from China.
He said that KS&EW can undertake river gates fabrication to ensure lifetime supportability to government of Sindh.
Technical Officer of SBIP Imran Aziz Tunio said that the punch list was signed between representatives of the Consultants of the project ACE-NDC (Joint Venture) and the KS&EW and the installed gates will be handed over to the Barrage authorities after defect liability period.
The commissioning ceremony was attended by project management officials of SBIP Sajid Bhutto, Abdul Razzaque Memon, Abdul Fatah Memon, Zahid Mughal, Faraz Ahmed Noonari, and high-ranking officials from the government of Sindh, Pakistan Navy, Consultant ACE-NDC, Bahria Foundation, Mott Macdonald Pakistan and the KS&EW. Chief Engineer Guddu barrage Ishaq Abbasi also attended the ceremony.
In the ceremony, gate number 31 of the barrage model was named after former secretary irrigation H.M Dahar and was handed over to Chief Engineer Sukkur Barrage by the PD SBIP. It was made at Karachi Shipyard & Engineering Works and was kept in barrage museum.
Finally the unveiling of the plaque of the Sukkur Barrage gate replacement commissioning was held.