Indus Water treaty

  • 25 Jun 2024

On June 23rd, 2024, a 40 member Pakistani delegation arrived in Jammu as part of the Neutral Expert proceedings to inspect two hydroelectric power projects in Jammu and Kashmir under the Indus Water Treaty (IWT).

  • This is the first visit by a Pakistani delegation to Jammu and Kashmir in more than five years under the dispute settlement mechanism of the 1960 Treaty.

Indus Waters Treaty

  • The Indus Waters Treaty was signed between then Prime Minister Jawaharlal Nehru and former Pakistan President Ayub Khan in 1960 with the World Bank as a signatory to the pact. According to Treaty, the two sides to meet once a year, alternately in India and Pakistan.
  • The treaty gives India the right to generate hydroelectricity through projects generated on the Western rivers, subjected to specific design and operation criteria. At the same time, it permits Pakistan to object to any Indian design on projects that do not meet the criteria.
  • üEastern Rivers - The Sutlej, The Beas and The Ravi taken together.
  • üWestern Rivers - The Indus, The Jhelum and The Chenab taken together.

Permanent Indus Commission (PIC)

  • The Permanent Indus Commission (PIC) is a bilateral commission of officials from India and Pakistan, created to implement and manage the goals of the Indus Waters Treaty of 1960, brokered by the World Bank.
  • It comprises the Indus Commissioners from both sides and discusses technical matters related to the implementation of the treaty.

India Pakistan Water Disputes

  • Pakistan has objected to the building of the Kishanganga (330 megawatts) and Ratle (850 megawatts) hydroelectric plants by India, saying that it violates the provisions of the treaty. India insists on its right to build these projects and holds that their design is fully in compliance with the guidelines of the treaty.

Neutral Expert

  • In October 2022, the World Bank appointed Michael Lino as the Neutral Expert and Sean Murphy as the chair of the Court of Arbitration. Following the appointment, there were two meetings, along with India’s refusal to join the Court of Arbitration.