Pakistan and India will conduct crucial water talks today in Lahore. An Indian delegation will arrive in Lahore to interact with the newly elected PTI government headed by the Prime Minister Imran Khan.
Indian Water Commissioner Pradeep Kumar Saxena is heading a nine-member delegation. He will discuss the Pakal Dul and lower Kalnai projects with Pakistan. Syed Meher Ali Shah Pakistan’s Commissioner for Indus Waters will head the Pakistani delegation.
In two days’ time, different major issues will be discussed including the Indus Waters Treaty. Pakistan has raised its voice against the construction of Pakal Dul, Lower Kalnai, and Ratle hydroelectricity projects in Indian Occupied Kashmir. Pakistan has clearly stated that construction of these projects is violating the terms and conditions of the Indus Water Treaty.
In Indus Water Treaty that was negotiated by the World Bank in 1960, Indus, Jhelum and Chenab rivers were given to Pakistan and Sutlej, Beas and Ravi rivers were given to India. The terms clearly stated that Indian and Pakistan water commissioners must meet twice a year and visit the project sites as well. In March the last meeting was held of Pakistan-India Permanent Indus Commission in New Delhi. In the meeting both Pakistan and India raised concerns relating to the quantity of water & water flow used under Indus Water Treaty 1960.
Pakistan is currently facing a severe water crisis. Under the Supreme Court’s directive donations are being collected for construction of dams in the country. So far Rs 1,139,720,000 donation has been received for the construction of dams.