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Pakistan, India Failed To Reach Consensus On Water Issues

Lahore (August 30, 2018): Pakistan and India once again failed on Thursday to reach consensus during their second round of talks pertaining to the Indus Water Treaty at the National Engineering Services of Pakistan headquarters.

According to the details, talks between Pakistan and India were in a state of deadlock as the visiting delegation snubbed their Pakistani counterparts for raising objections over treaty violations.

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The Pakistani members led by Commissioner Syed Meher Ali Shah expressed reservation on the two under-construction controversial water reservoirs and hydro power projects.

He said Pakistan has serious reservations over construction of 1000-MW Pakal Dul and 48-MW Lower Kalnai hydroelectric projects on two different tributaries of River Chenab by India.

The Pakistani side also demanded to reduce the height of Pakal Dul by five feet. However, the Indian delegation said construction of the dams does not violate the Indus Water Treaty.Indian Commissioner PK Saxena’s delegation maintained that Pakistan has not built a single major dam after Mangla and Tarbela as Pakistan objected to the construction of two Indian dams on Chenab river. Indian dignitaries also claimed that the changing climate has led to severe lack of water supply in India’s rivers.

As the deadlock persisted, the members decided to hold a third round of talks to discuss the issues. The schedule of the meeting will be decided later.On Wednesday, Pakistani authorities apprised the Saxena-led Indian delegation to reduce the freeboard height of the Indian hydro-power project Pakal Dul which will have an installed capacity of 1,000 megawatts.

Following a Supreme Court judgment on July 4 regarding construction of the Diamer-Bhasha and Mohmand dams, Chief Justice of Pakistan Mian Saqib Nisar kick-started the initiative by donating Rs1 million for the cause and urged all institutions and individuals to play their due role in their construction to defeat water scarcity in the country.

Previously in 2012, Pakistan objected over Pakal Dul’s design for violating the Sindh Taas Agreement.

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