In Today’s News:
- India and Pakistan – a difference of opinion over Indus water talks.
1. India and Pakistan – a difference of opinion over Indus water talks
India has refused to host a physical meeting over Indus water talks amid COVID-19 pandemic and instead suggested for a virtual meeting but Pakistan wanted a physical meeting at the Attari check post near the India-Pakistan border. The major issue to be discussed is regarding the technical issues which have arisen over India’s construction of the Ratle run-of-the-river (RoR) project on the Chenab in the Kishtwar district of Jammu and Kashmir. India has called for the appointment of a ‘neutral’ party while Pakistan is asking for a Court of Arbitration to reach a final resolution on this hydropower project.
(Note: For Prelims, remember the project name and the river on which it is constructed)
Mains GS2 – History (Post Independence)
Indus Water Treaty and the Significance:
- Indus Water Treaty was signed in 1960 by the then Prime Minister of India Pandit Jawaharlal Nehru and the President of Pakistan Ayub Khan.
- The Indus Water Treaty is an agreement that was made to outline a mutually agreeable plan between Pakistan and India to control the 6 rivers that run across India and then Pakistan into the Indus basin.
- In 1960, India and Pakistan reached a mutual agreement to resolve the issues between India and Pakistan regarding the utilization of rivers with the orchestration of the World Bank.
- According to the treaty, three Western rivers Jhelum, Chenab and Indus were allocated to Pakistan and the three eastern rivers Ravi, Beas, and Sutlej were allocated to India.
- All the waters of the Eastern Rivers shall be available for the unrestricted use of India.
- According to the treaty, the waters of the western rivers – Indus, Jhelum, and Chenab were allocated to Pakistan except for ‘specified domestic, non-consumptive, and agricultural use permitted to India.
- According to the terms of the Indus Water Treaty, India has the right to build Run of River(RoR) projects on the three ‘western’ rivers(the Chenab, Jhelum, and Indus) without obstructing water flow in Pakistan downstream.
- Also, a Permanent Indus Commission has been set up with Commissioners from both India and Pakistan.
- This treaty has helped in the peaceful sharing of water between India and Pakistan.
- But in 2016, after URI cross border attacks by Pakistan, Hon’ble PM of India Shri. Narendra Modi told that “Blood and water cannot flow simultaneously“. This is a warning by India to Pakistan regarding Indus Water Sharing.
Click here for more information on the Indus Water Treaty in the Ministry of External Affairs website.
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