UN report blames Pakistan for delay in resolution of Indus water issues with India

Pakistan has neglected to resolve trans-border water issues and delayed presenting the cases of dispute with India to the Water Commission related to the Indus Waters Treaty, a United Nation Development Programme (UNDP) report said on Tuesday.

The report titled “Development Advocate Pakistan”, released in Pakistan, said, “Pakistan’s negligence in conducting a sound analysis of trans-boundary water issues and delays in presenting the cases of dispute with India to the Indus Water Commission or the World Bank on the issues related to the Indus Waters Treaty have caused the issues to linger on and remain unaddressed.”

“Pakistan has gone as far as calling the treaty an inefficient forum for resolving water issues, elevating the water issue to a “core issue” and including it in the composite dialogue. But India has refused to include the issue in the composite dialogue because it is not ready to discard the treaty,” the report said.

“The treaty permitted India to create storage on the western rivers of 1.25, 1.60 and 0.75 million acre feet (MAF) for general, power and flood storages, respectively, amounting to a total permissible storage of 3.6 MAF,” it added.

“The treaty fails to address two issues: the division of shortages in dry years between India and Pakistan, when flows are almost half as compared to wet years, and the cumulative impact of storages on the flows of the River Chenab into Pakistan,” the UNDP report said.

Wular Barrage and Kishenganga project on the Jhelum and Neelum rivers present a similar problem whereby water storage during the Rabi season is critical as flows are almost one-fifth of the Kharif season, according the report. Read more

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