Pakistan and India unanimously reaffirmed their commitment to implementing the Water of Indus Treaty (IWT) during the 117th meeting of the Permanent Indus Commission (PIC).
The meeting took place between March 1-3, according to a press release on Tuesday.
In accordance with the IWT 1960, there are yearly meetings alternately held in Pakistan and India each year.
Ten Pakistani delegation members were led by Commissioner for Indus Waters Syed Mehar Ali Shah. A member of the Indian delegation led by PK Saxena represented the Indian mission.
During the conference, India and Pakistan discussed several water-related issues.
The Pakistani government reaffirmed its position as a response to India’s observations on the Kiru Hydroelectric Project (HEP) on the Chenab River and the new run-of-river HEPs planned for the west coast of India.
As part of this communiqué, Pakistan was also asked to address its concerns regarding Indian projects such as Pakal Dul and Lower Kalnai.
According to the rules of the treaty and conduct from 1989 to 2018, the Indian side was also asked to send advance flood-flow information.
They also expressed the hope that the next commission conference would take place soon in India, and that the treaty would be fully implemented.
The second round of high-level talks between Islamabad and New Delhi on the construction of hydroelectric facilities by India along with the disputed border areas of China, India, and Pakistan, including Kargil, generated mixed results.
India has emphatically rejected the 1989 deal that created data-sharing on the flow of the eastern rivers Ravi, Satluj, and Beas, notwithstanding Pakistan’s objections.
The second round was delayed 45 minutes. Because Syed Mehar Ali Shah, the Pakistani Indus Water Commissioner, was denied entry to a hotel in Islamabad due to security concerns.
The Pakistani commissioner was recalled to the Ministry of Water Resources due to security misconduct. Pakistan’s Indus Water Commissioner later hosted a high-level discussion on water resources, which included senior officials.
During the first round of negotiations, Shah raised technical concerns with his Indian counterpart about India’s building of the 644 MW Khetro Hydropower Project on the Chenab River.
The Pakistani government has expressed concern that the contentious project will have a negative impact on the Chenab River. Agricultural lands surrounding the reservoir at Head Marala, near Sialkot, would be directly impacted.
The argument between the two powerful countries’ Indus Water Commissioners began, according to sources, when the Pakistani commissioner sent his Indian counterpart statistics on the eastern rivers that flow into Pakistan.