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INDUS WATER TREATY

INDUS WATER TREATY The Indus Waters Treaty was signed in Karachi on 19 September 1960 by President Muhammad Ayub Khan of Pakistan, Prime Minister Jawaharlal Nehru of India, andW A B Iliff, vice president of the World Bank It stipulated that the water of the Indus River system should be apportioned on the basis of a formula that gave both countries access to the system The treaty gave the use of the three eastern rivers-Ravi, Beas, and Sutlejexclusively to India, whereas the waters of the three western riversIndus, Jhelum, and Chenab-were available exclusively for use by Pakistan, except for limited exploitation by India in the upstream areas in Indian Kashmir and the Indian states of Punjab and Himachel Pradesh India was allowed to build a specified storage capacity of no more than 36 million acre feet (MAF) The flow of the western rivers into Pakistan is estimated at 1356 MAF



The actual division of water was to be accomplished over a period of 10 years, during which a system of “replacement works” was to be constructed At Pakistan’s request, the period of transition could be extended to 13 yearsThe Indus replacement works were to cost $1,070 million in 1960 prices, of which US$870 million, or 813 percent, were to be spent in Pakistan These works included two storage dams, one at Mangla on the Jhelum River with a capacity of 475 MAF, and the other on the Indus River, with a capacity of 42 MAF Tarbela was later selected as the site for the dam on the Indus The works also included five barrages and eight “link canals,” nearly 650 kilometers long, to be built to transfer water from the western to the eastern rivers Although India argued that the expenditure under the treaty should be only for “replacement” works, the final agreement incorporated some developmental schemes as well For instance, it was agreed that a power station would be built at Mangla, with a total generating capacity of 800 MW of electricity

The World Bank established an Indus Basin Development Fund to finance the works to be constructed in Pakistan The work on the replacement system began in the early 1960s and was completed 14 years later with the commissioning of the Tarbela dam in 1974 The treaty made it possible for Pakistan to use 80 percent of the waters in the Indus river system, extending the country’s already extensive irrigation network and thus preparing the ground for Pakistan’s first “green revolution” in the late 1960s The Indus replacement works also provided 3,000 MW of electric power at a time when the demand for energy was increasing rapidly The treaty did not fully resolve all disputes between the two countries One particular problem occurred in the late 1980s when India decided to build a barrage at Wullar in the part of Kashmir that it occupied In 2005, Pakistan referred the dispute over the construction of the Baghhar dam on the Chenab to the World Bank and began to communicate to the Indian government its concern about the proposed Kishengonga dam

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