Kalabagh dam is a political decision, and people do not want it irrespective of its economic merits .
Projects that benefit Car-walas Elites vs Projects that benefit car-less commoners
The real comparison is between flyovers and expressway/ring-roads that only benefit the car-walas elites vs metrobus/trains that primarily benefit only the car-less commoners? From a feasibility point of view one should evaluate which has a greater multiplier impact?
Typically people try to compare clean water vs metro/train or schools vs metro/train projects. This is like comparing apples with oranges. Even hospitals vs metro/trains is also comparing apples with oranges. This is complex comparison and a hard problem but it can also be done. But we can do it later, but first we must do a more simpler comparison of flyovers/ring-roads that facilitate only car-wala elites in Islamabad and other elite areas of cities vs Metrobus/trains to facilitate car-less commoners.
What is the total investment on highways/flyovers over the last 4 years and how many people benefited and what is the total investment in metro buses/trains and how many people benefited?
Also comparison of flyovers/roads in cities’ elite areas vs backward areas vs intercity roads?
Here we discuss ideas, not people. Economics 101 course starts by emphasizing that resources are scarce, wants n needs are unlimited. How do you allocate scarce resources to unlimited wants/needs? In a democracy, parliamentary majority decides prioritization and allocation of the resources. In Pakistan, during the greater part of our existence, either parliament did not exist, or when it exists (as today) prioritization should be discussed, costs benefits should be evaluated. This discussion is good because we are discussing whether 120+ flyovers constructed all over the country to facilitate car-walas should be prioritized over the metros constructed only for car-less commoners.
My first course in Economics was in 1985 during my MBA program. Mr Mumtaz was teaching macro economics. The very first lecture was about what is economics. He emphasized that wants are unlimited but our resources are limited. Economics is the art and science of allocating meagre resources to satisfy the insatiable demands. He would repeat this concept so many times through out the course that it became a part of my thinking. This issue of allocation of resources becomes satisfying these demands without causing political and social explosion which is most likely when votes and public opinion is not respected. This was the reason for the failure of Gen Ayub’s decade of development.
Rough Outline to Design a Feasibility