IndiaBlood and water cannot flow together says PM

Blood and water cannot flow together says PM


New Delhi, September 26: Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Monday said “blood and water cannot flow together,” as he chaired a review meeting of the 56-year-old Indus Water Treaty during which it was decided that would “exploit to the maximum” the waters of Pakistan-controlled rivers, including Jhelum, under the water-sharing pact.

Held amidst heightened tension between India and Pakistan, the meeting also decided to set up an inter- ministerial task force to go into the details and working of the treaty with a “sense of urgency”, government sources said.

Attended by Security Adviser Ajit Doval, Foreign Secretary S Jaishankar, the Water Resources Secretary and senior PMO officials, the meeting also noted that the meeting of Indus Water Commission could “only take place in an atmosphere free of terror”. The Commission has held 112 meetings so far.

“Prime Minister Modi's message at the meeting was that ‘rakt aur paani ek saath nahin beh sakta' (blood and water cannot flow together),” sources said.

Apart from deciding to exploit to the maximum the capacity of three of the rivers that are under Pakistan's control— Indus, Chenab and Jhelum—in the areas of hydropower, irrigation and storage, the meeting also agreed to review the “unilateral suspension” of the Tulbul navigation project in 1987.

Sources asserted that the decision to maximise the water resources for irrigation would address the “pre-existing” sentiment of people of and , who had complained in the past about the treaty not being fair to them.

The meeting came as India weighed its options to hit back at Pakistan in the aftermath of the Uri attack that left 18 soldiers dead, triggering demands that the government cancel the water distribution pact to mount pressure on that country.

Under the treaty, which was signed by Prime Minister Jawaharlal Nehru and Pakistan President Ayub Khan in September 1960, water of six rivers—the Beas, Ravi, Sutlej, Indus, Chenab and Jhelum—were to be shared between the two countries.

Pakistan has been complaining about not receiving enough water and gone for international arbitration in a couple of cases. PTI

The Northlines is an independent source on the Web for news, facts and figures relating to Jammu, Kashmir and Ladakh and its neighbourhood.


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