Skip to main content

Abrogating Indus Valley Treaty? It would invite major floods in Kashmir and Jammu region, claims top expert

By Our Representative
Amidst Government of India floating the view that it may abrogate the Indus Waters Treaty between India and Pakistan, the view is getting strong, especially among knowledgeable circles, that any move in that direction would not just hit India adversely internationally, but it will also have major environmental consequences in the entire Jammu & Kashmir (J&K).
Signed 55 years ago, in 1960, and considered worldwide the most successful treaty between two countries, influential circles believe, it is particularly “not advisable” for India not to scrap the treaty, which is aspiring to become a permanent member of the United National Security Council.
The treaty “divides” six rivers, with three of them on the eastern front being “given” to India, and three others on the western side three rivers remaining “exclusively” with Pakistan. Considered “a win-win situation” for both, the treaty has not been questioned even during the worst of times with Pakistan – the 1965 and 1971 wars, or the Kargil imbroglio.
Worse, Dr Shakil Ahmad Romshoo, head of the earth sciences, geology and geophysics departments, University of Kashmir, in a recent interview, says that “people who talk about scrapping this treaty have no technical understanding.”
“There are so many trans-boundary rivers in the world and countries have to find a mechanism to share water. All over the world the Indus Waters Treaty is referred as our most successful treaty”, says Romshoo, adding, “At this moment we are sharing water with Bangladesh and Nepal too. If we scrap this treaty we will scare these countries as well.”
Vikas Swarup, the ministry of external affairs spokesperson, first hinted at the possibility of scrapping the treaty to teach Pakistan a lesson a few days back, while talking of “differences between India and Pakistan on the implementation of the Indus Waters Treaty,", insisting, “Eventually any cooperative arrangement requires goodwill and mutual trust on both sides."
Technically, says Romshoo, it is not possible to abrogate the treaty, pointing out, “Even if you put infrastructure to do so, it will take you 10 to 15 years to build canals to divert the water. J&K is a mountainous state and you will have to build canals to take the water out of the state.”
The rivers on the the eastern front are Sutlej, Beas and Ravi, for which rights have been given exclusively to India in the treaty. On the western front are Indus, Jhelum and Chenab, whose rights are with Pakistan, though some of their waters are used in J&K for the purpose of hydropower generation, for domestic use and for agriculture, while the rest of it being released to Pakistan.
Romshoo says, as of today, India does not have any infrastructure to store this water. “We have not build dams in J&K where we can store the water. And being a mountainous state, unlike Tamil Nadu or Karnataka, you cannot move water to another state. So you cannot stop water technically”, he adds.
In case India stops the river waters from entering Pakistan, says Romshoo, “the Kashmir valley will flood as will Jammu. You just don't have the storage capacity.” He adds, “In Kashmir you do not need too much water for irrigation purposes. If you look at the Indus Waters Treaty, India is entitled to store water, but has failed to develop that infrastructure in J&K.”

Comments

yatin said…
The headline is misleading. Walking out of the treaty allows India to use the water as it sees fit, and let however much (or little) that is left run into Pakistan. The only reason the IWT 'works' is that India is 100% the giver and Pakistan is 100% the receiver. Pakistan has no reason to walk out on a really good deal. If the roles were reversed, there would be no treaty. The first (and legal thing) India can do is begin building dams on the 3 rivers it is allowed to work on. It is silly that India has not done this yet.

TRENDING

Swami Vivekananda's views on caste and sexuality were 'painfully' regressive

By Bhaskar Sur* Swami Vivekananda now belongs more to the modern Hindu mythology than reality. It makes a daunting job to discover the real human being who knew unemployment, humiliation of losing a teaching job for 'incompetence', longed in vain for the bliss of a happy conjugal life only to suffer the consequent frustration.

Critics of your government should not be in jail: PUCL shoots open letter to Modi

Counterview Desk In an open letter, Ravikiran Jain, national president, and Dr V Suresh, general secretary, People’s Union for Civil Liberties (PUCL) have taken strong exception to Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s view that raising human rights issues can ‘tarnish’ the country’s reputation, stating, those who raise human rights concerns do it “through established United Nations mechanisms such as the UN Human Rights Council, the Office of the UN High Commissioner of Human Rights.”

Dalits 'celebrate' Constitutional Power Era in 12,500 villages of 16 districts on Nov 26

By Pradip More*  It is a fact that the majority of the people do not have much knowledge about the law, and especially the Constitution. Yet, today's younger generation is becoming increasingly aware of its rights. One wished it would have been good if it was taught about the Constitution well in the schools.

When judges behave more like priests, delivering sermons from high podium...

By Ajit Singh*  The theory of separation of power found its origins in ancient Greece but with the passage of time it became widespread in other parts of Europe. Early proponent of the theory Greek philosopher Aristotle in “Politics” argued that implementation of constitution in letter and spirit can only be possible if the three elements among whom the power has been distributed are well arranged.

Buddhist shrines were 'massively destroyed' by Brahmanical rulers: Historian DN Jha

Nalanda mahavihara By Our Representative Prominent historian DN Jha, an expert in India's ancient and medieval past, in his new book , "Against the Grain: Notes on Identity, Intolerance and History", in a sharp critique of "Hindutva ideologues", who look at the ancient period of Indian history as "a golden age marked by social harmony, devoid of any religious violence", has said, "Demolition and desecration of rival religious establishments, and the appropriation of their idols, was not uncommon in India before the advent of Islam".

'We are scared to even raise our voice': Delhi sewer workers tell roundtable

By Our Representative  A roundtable attended by more than 100 sewer workers in Delhi, saw sharp voices against the contract system, poor wages and lack of any social benefits. Organised by the Dalit Adivasi Shakti Adhikar Manch (DASAM), which has refused to reveal the identity of the sewer workers who spoke on the occasion for fear of retaliation from the authorities, saw workers complain that have been working for more than 10 years, hoping that someday they would be made permanent.

Govt of India's 'narrative' of hate, 'clarion call' for onslaught on civil society: Ex-babus

Counterview Desk  Addressing “fellow citizens”, the Constitution Conduct Group (CCG), having former prominent civil servants as it members, has said that recent assertions by National Human Rights Commission National Human Rights Commission Justice (retd) Arun Mishra, the Prime Minister and General Bipin Rawat, Chief of Defence Staff, portent a deliberate and disturbing strategy to “deny civil society the space and wherewithal for its operation.”

Muck being thrown in Uttarakhand rivers: Villagers face 'existential' crisis

By Vidya Bhushan Rawat*  The Uttarakhand government must act fast to clear the path of Dhauli Ganga river about two kilometres ahead of village Neeti and about one kilometre from Ghamsali village, which is about 90 kilometer from Joshi Math town in district Chamoli. The creation of an artificial lake due to throwing of muck and mud can create a catastrophic situation like what happened on February 7, 2021-- the Rishi Ganga-Dhauli Ganga tragedy at Tapovan and Raini village in which over 200 people lost their life.

How Indore turned into water minus city after authorities 'managed' Water Plus title

Water harvester cleaning up hyacinth from an Indore river By Rahul Banerjee*  Recently, the city of Indore was declared the first Water Plus city in India under the Swachh Sarvekshan programme of the Ministry of Housing and Urban Development for its ostensibly exemplary waste water management. However, the reality is quite different as a detailed study of the prevailing wastewater management situation in the city shows.

UP govt 'ignoring' demand to fill up teachers' posts despite unemployment: Rights groups

Sandeep Pandey with Shikha Pal Counterview Desk  Commenting on the unique protest undertaken by Shikha Pal atop an overhead water tank for nearly four months, the Socialist Party (India), in association with several civil rights group, Yuva Shakti Sangathan, Socialist Yuvjan Sabha and Rihai Manch, have wondered why has the Yogi Adityanath government is so “insensitive” towards her demands and is looking the “other way.”