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India not fulfilling responsibilities under Indus Waters Treaty: Aziz

Islamabad, Feb 6: India has not been fulfilling its responsibilities under the Indus Waters Treaty, Pakistan foreign policy chief Sartaj Aziz said on Monday airing Islamabad’s concerns over construction of new dams by New Delhi.

In his written reply in the tiol Assembly, Aziz said Pakistan has expressed concerns over construction of new dams by India. Last week, Prime Minister waz Sharif took up the issue with World Bank CEO Kristali Georgieva in Islamabad, and contended that India’s new dam building on Indus river’s tributaies was sheer violation of the Indus Waters Treaty.

“India’s construction of Ratle and Kishenganga dams on western rivers is a violation of the treaty,” he contended.

Sharif said that since the World Bank was a sigtory to the treaty, it should play its due role to help resolve the issue, expressing his hope that the World Bank will set a court of arbitration in this regard.

Pakistan and India share the waters of Indus River Basin which has been a major source of contention between the two states since Independence. In order to resolve the disputes, both countries signed IWT in 1960 with the help of World Bank, which has survived over five decades of hostilities between the two states.

However, due to the recent upsurge in the Kashmir Valley, water has once again become a divisive issue. Prime Minister rendra Modi’s “blood and water cannot flow together” and the threat of unilateral abrogation of the treaty has resulted into a new wave of hydro politics around Pakistan and brought the Indus Water Treaty under stress.  (IANS)

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Ankur Kalita