Union minister Nitin Gadkari on Thursday said the Narendra Modi-led central government has decided to stop its share of eastern rivers water flowing to Pakistan in the wake of the deadly Pulwama terror attack.
“Under the leadership of Hon’ble PM Sri Narendra Modi ji, Our Govt. has decided to stop our share of water which used to flow to Pakistan. We will divert water from Eastern rivers and supply it to our people in Jammu and Kashmir and Punjab,” Gadkari tweeted.
A ministry official, however, has clarified that Gadkari has only reiterated what he has been saying in the past. “He is talking about diverting India’s share of Indus water which was going to Pakistan – and he has always been saying this,” the official said.
Gadkari said the construction of dam has started at Shahpur- Kandi on Ravi river. “Moreover, UJH project will store our share of water for use in J&K and the balance water will flow from 2nd Ravi-BEAS Link to provide water to other basin states,” he added.
Under the leadership of Hon’ble PM Sri @narendramodi ji, Our Govt. has decided to stop our share of water which used to flow to Pakistan. We will divert water from Eastern rivers and supply it to our people in Jammu and Kashmir and Punjab.
— Nitin Gadkari (@nitin_gadkari) February 21, 2019
As per the Indus Waters Treaty, India has full rights over the waters of the eastern rivers (Ravi, Beas and Sutlej). In return, India had to let the western rivers–Indus, Chenab and Jhelum–flow “unrestricted” to Pakistan. India could use the waters of western rivers as well, but only in a “non-consumptive” manner. It could use it for domestic purposes, and even for irrigation and hydropower production, but only in the manner specified in the treaty.
Water is a hot-button issue for Pakistan and Islamabad has always raised the issue of “unfair water-sharing” from India in its dialogue. While India claims that it has always honoured its commitments under the 1960 treaty, Islamabad claims the opposite.