Following Islamabad’s ‘intransigence’ on its implementation, India has notified Pakistan that the Indus Waters Treaty (IWT) of September 1960 has to be modified, informed official sources on Friday.
According to them, the notice was delivered on January 25 via the appropriate Indus waterways commissioners.
The sources said, India has consistently been a dependable ally and responsible partner in putting the IWT into practise in text and spirit.
However, the source added, ‘Pakistan’s activities have severely affected the IWT provisions and their execution, forcing India to give an appropriate notification for amendment of the treaty.’
After nine years of negotiations, India and Pakistan signed the accord in 1960, with the World Bank also ratifying it.
The agreement lays up a framework for communication and collaboration between the two nations over the utilisation of the waters of several rivers.
Pakistan asked for the appointment of an impartial expert in 2015 to look into its technical complaints against India’s Kishenganga and Ratle Hydroelectric Projects (HEPs).
According to the sources, Pakistan unilaterally withdrew this request in 2016 and suggested that a Court of Arbitration rule on its objections.
They claimed that Pakistan’s unilateral move violates the graduated dispute resolution framework envisioned by Article IX of the IWT.
India subsequently asked for the subject to be sent to a third party expert in a separate request.
‘The beginning of two concurrent processes on the same questions and the possibility of their conflicting or contradictory findings creates an unprecedented and legally untenable situation, which risks compromising the IWT itself’ claimed sources.
The World Bank accepted this on its own, it claimed, and decided to ‘stop’ the start of two parallel procedures and ask India and Pakistan to look for a peaceful resolution.
The sources claimed that Pakistan refused to consider the matter throughout the five meetings of the Permanent Indus Commission from 2017 to 2022, despite persistent efforts by India to find a mutually beneficial solution.
The World Bank has recently started taking action on both the neutral expert and Court of Arbitration processes, they claimed, in response to Pakistan’s ongoing insistence.
The sources further stated that no IWT clause addressed such concurrent assessment of the same issues.
The source previously quoted stated, ‘baced with such a violation of IWT regulations, India has been obligated to send notice of change.’
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