Kishanganga dam: Legal battle far from over

Discussion in 'Pakistan' started by farhan_9909, Apr 1, 2013.

  1. farhan_9909

    farhan_9909 Tihar Jail Banned

    Aug 30, 2012
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    Although the International Court of Arbitration (ICA) has already announced its partial award on the controversial Kishanganga dam, the festering dispute is far from over.
    Pakistan and India may soon enter a new legal battle if New Delhi doesn’t change the design of the hydropower project being built on the Neelum-Jehlum river in the disputed Himalayan region of Kashmir.

    Sources told The Express Tribune that Islamabad has asked New Delhi to not restart the construction of the dam until differences over the project have been resolved either amicably or through the intervention of a neutral expert. They added that since India is noncommittal, Pakistan may be forced to approach a neutral expert earlier than expected.

    Both legal and technical issues surrounding the dam remain unresolved. But while the legal issues will be removed once the ICA announces its final award in December 2013, technical aspects have yet to be put before a neutral expert.

    Meanwhile, experts believe the process is being delayed.
    According to an official of the ministry of water and power, Pakistan’s Commissioner for Indus Water Mirza Asif Baig had opposed the initiation of the process shortly after the conclusion of the ICA hearing in August last year. Baig recommended taking up the technical issues before a neutral expert after the ICA announced the partial award.

    Other agencies, however, suggested that the process be started as soon as possible, given the time-consuming nature of the appointment of a neutral expert and since it was clear that the interim order would be vacated in the award and India would proceed with construction.

    The matter was discussed again in an inter-ministerial meeting, where Baig insisted that the issue be taken up with the relevant Indian authorities and they be given an opportunity to clarify their position. Some participants suggested that an undertaking be sought from New Delhi, assuring that construction of the dam would not begin until the dispute is resolved.

    On March 18, the Pakistani foreign ministry sent a letter to the Indian High Commission in Islamabad saying that unless the design of Kishanganga dam was modified, Pakistan would have to move to a neutral expert.

    “The government of Pakistan requests to be informed whether the government of India has since reconsidered its position and is now willing to make design changes in accordance with the design criteria stipulated in the (Indus Water) treaty,” it stated.

    In the letter, Pakistan maintained in light of ICA’s partial award, India could no longer justify the provision of deep orifice gated spillways in the dam’s design. “In this regard, a modification of the design is necessitated to ensure compliance of the criterion stipulated in treaty.”
    India had previously taken the stance that the design of Kishanganga dam was consistent with the Indus Water Treaty. According to Baig, appointing a neutral expert will be necessary to resolve differences if India continues to maintain this stance.

    India is still using delay tactics on this matter, despite the ICA’s award clearly stipulating that all matters between the two countries over the dam must be resolved bilaterally within three months or referred to a third party for resolution.
    Published in The Express Tribune, April 1st, 2013.

    Kishanganga dam: Legal battle far from over – The Express Tribune
  3. Hari Sud

    Hari Sud Senior Member Senior Member

    Mar 31, 2012
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    Bad looser.

    There is no other recourse other than settle as per award given. The only issue to be settled by this summer is how much water India would divert. All other issues are over.

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