India to divert excess waters under Indus treaty to irrigate own land

Source: Livemint

What is the News?

India is working on exercising its rights to stop excess water flowing to Pakistan under the Indus Waters Treaty of 1960 to irrigate its own lands.

About Indus Water Treaty:
  • The Indus Water Treaty,1960 is a water-distribution treaty between India and Pakistan with the World Bank also being a signatory.
  • According to the treaty, waters of the eastern rivers — Sutlej, Beas and Ravi — have been allocated to India for unrestricted use.Similarly, the western rivers — the Indus, Jhelum and Chenab were allocated to Pakistan.
  • However, India has been given the right to generate hydroelectricity through a run of the river projects on the western rivers subject to specific criteria for design and operation.
  • Further, Pakistan also has the right to raise concerns on the design of Indian hydroelectric projects on western rivers.
  • Permanent Indus Commission: It is a bilateral commission of officials from India and Pakistan.It was created to implement and manage the goals of the Indus Water Treaty, 1960.
What does India want to do?
  • India has planned to fully utilize its share of water under the Indus Water treaty.
  • India is working on a plan to divert the waters of Ujh which is one of the main tributaries of the Ravi river that flows into Pakistan.
  • Further, India is also expediting strategically important hydropower projects in Jammu and Kashmir such as 850-megawatt (MW) Ratle, 800MW Bursar, 1,000MW Pakal Dul, 624MW Kiru and 540 MW Kwar.
  • Moreover, these projects also have a strategic importance to India given that control over river water flow acts as a force multiplier during times of aggression.

Has Pakistan ever raised objection to any of our Hydropower projects?

  • Pakistan has previously objected to India’s hydroelectric power project plans.It had raised its objections on the 330MW project on the river Kishanganga, a tributary of Jhelum, the International Court of Arbitration at The Hague ruled in India’s favour in 2013.
  • Pakistan had also raised objections on the 850 MW Ratle, 1,000MW Pakal Dul and 48MW Lower Kalnai hydro electric projects on River Chenab.

 

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