The two-day talks between Pakistan and India, held in Lahore, ended in a deadlock as the Indian delegation disregarded the objection raised by the Pakistani counterparts.
The Pakistani delegation raised objections over what they called a violation of the Indus Water Treaty of 1960. Pakistan maintained that the water distribution and construction of two dams by India on river Chenab is in violation under the ambit of the same.
The Pakistani delegation also asked the Indian delegation to reduce the freeboard height of the Indian hydro-power project Pakal Dul, which holds the installed capacity of at least 1,000 megawatts.
In 2012, Pakistan objected over Pakal Dul’s design, claiming it to be a violation of the Sindh Taas Agreement. (Photo: Reuters)
However, the Pakistani concerns were ignored and snubbed by the Indian Commissioner PK Saxena-led delegation, who reminded Pakistan of failing to build a single major dam after Mangla and Tarbela, which he maintained leaves no ground for Pakistan to object on Indian dams on the Chenab River. Saxena also claimed that climate change has caused severe water scarcity and supply in India’s rivers.
The two-day meeting on water comprised of a nine-member delegation from India and Pakistan, who met in Lahore’s National Engineering Services Pakistan (NESPAK). Syed Mehar Ali Shah led the Pakistan delegation, while Saxena led the Indian delegation.
The focus of the talks was aimed at Pakistan’s concerns over Indian hydropower projects at Lower Kalnai and Pakal Dul, which have the power generating capacity of 48 and 1000 megawatts respectively.
In 2012, Pakistan objected over Pakal Dul’s design, claiming it to be a violation of the Sindh Taas Agreement. Pakistan claims that with these projects, India will be taking control of at least 108,000 acre-feet of water from the Chenab River. While Pakistan had its concerns shared to their counterparts, the Indian delegation was not ready to do the same.