In a new development, Pakistan takes India to World Bank
WASHINGTON – Pakistan’s high-level delegation has departed to the United States to hold talks with the World Bank officials on the dispute with India about the construction of the Kishenganga (330 megawatts) and Ratle (850 megawatts) hydroelectric power plants being built by India.
The move that is an attempt to block the flow of water to Pakistan under the Indus Waters Treaty (IWT) 1960.
The delegation, led by Indus Water Commissioner Meher Ali Shah, comprises of officials from the relevant bodies involved to discuss the dispute comprehensively, including the Ministry of Water Resources.
It will hold talks with the World Bank officials to ensure the implementation of the IWT, and will express its concerns about the construction of the Kishenganga and Ratle hydroelectric power plants.
Importantly, the matter of taking this issue to the Court of Arbitration will also be discussed with the World Bank as it guarantees the implementation of the IWT between Pakistan and India.
On Oct. 17, the Foreign Office had warned India that any move to block the flow of water to Pakistan under the IWT would be considered “an act of aggression”.
FO Spokesman Dr Mohammad Faisal, at his weekly media briefing, had reminded India of Pakistan’s “exclusive rights” under the IWT to receive water from the Indus, the Chenab and the Jhelum rivers and had mentioned that “any attempt to divert flows of these rivers will be considered an act of aggression and Pakistan has the right to respond”.
He said Pakistan would exercise the appropriate options available to it.
The spokesman was responding to a statement by Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi, during an election rally in Haryana, in which he had said: “For 70 years, water that belonged to Haryana’s farmers and us flowed to Pakistan. … But, this Modi will stop that water and bring it to your houses.
I have already started working on it. The water belongs to India and farmers of Haryana.”