India has restarted work on the construction of 850MW Ratle hydropower project on the Chenab River send-off Pakistan inexperienced about how to stop its eastern fellow inhabitant from going ahead with the contentious project.
The work on the dam has been restart in spite of a silence announce by the World Bank on December 12, 2016.Islamabadneeds theWorld Bankto comprise a 7-member international court of arbitration; while India wants that the argument should be determined through a neutral expert.
However, when this journalist askedFederal MinisterforWater Resources Faisal Vawdaas to when the government was going to push the World Bank to break the silence and weight India for declaration of dispute on Kishanganga project, finished with an offensive design, andRattle hydropowerproject being construct with an out of order design, he said, ‘’We are keeping an eye on the development and will soon hold a meeting with the attorney general for Pakistan on the subject of pause, and way forward will be worked out.
“At the moment, we are in the change period because of the World Bank pause,’’ he said.Syed Mehr Ali Shah,Commissioner PakistanCommission ofIndus Water, however, says so far India has not ongoing work on the Rattle project.
Pakistan believes, the official said, thatKishanganga’s pondageought to be a maximum of one million cubic meters in its place of 7.5 million cubic meters, while the ingestion should be up to four meters and spillways should be raised to nine meters.
Official sources also said theWorld Bankhad previously askedPakistanon May 31, 2018, to move an unbiased expert for resolve theKishangangaandRattle hydropower projectissue. They said the establishment had not yet sensitized the government’s top management to theWorld Bank’s advice.
They have kept the top man in dark to avoid the wrath of the government, as the pause has enabledIndiato complete the Kishanganga project and is still enabling it to complete the Rattle project.
Pakistanhas four objections to the Rattle project: The freeboard should be one meter in its place of two meters, pondage should be a maximum of eight million cubic meters as an alternative of 24 million, and intake level should be at 8.8 meters and spillways at the height of 20 meters.
It believes Rattle intend would reduceChenab flowsby 40 percent atHead Maralacausing substantial loss to crops. The dam is believed to be three times larger than theBaglihar dam.
However, in the wake up of pause,Indiahas already administered to complete and make 330MW Kishanganga hydropower project practical. In a letter written on April 3, 2018,Pakistanheld the World Bank dependable for construction of Kishanganga project at variance that the pause had given India ample time to complete the Kishanganga project.
Since the pause previous taken by the World Bank in December 2016 is still in place and under the latest scenario India has decided to resume construction work on theRattle hydropower project, it is feared that India will try to take maximum benefit from the pause and complete the Rattle project.
Top officials at PCIW say work had been started on the dam portion. The letter was written on November 8, 2018, byTariq Karim, the counselor at thePakistan High Commission in New Delhi, to theForeign Officeof Pakistan confirms that India has decided to restart construction work onRattle hydropower project.
A copy of the letter from thePakistan High Commissionis also in possession of The News that clearly says that Rattle project was earlier planned to complete in 2017 but now its commissioning will be achieved in 2022.
‘’GVK company started work on the project in 2012 and in 2014 it abandoned it because of tariff controversy. Now the governor administration in Indian Held Kashmir has proposed to theUnion Power Ministrya joint venture between the Indian HeldKashmirandcentral governmentfor the execution of project a month after theJammu and Kashmirstate administrative councilgave go-ahead.
“The World Bank has started advising Pakistani authorities to move a neutral expert for the legal fight to do away with its objections to the said two projects,” the official said. TheWorld Bankthat brokered the 1960Indus Waters Treatybetween the two nuclear states has failed so far to constitute a 7-member full court of arbitration.
India does not want a resolution of the disputed project at theCoAlevel, rather it wants that a neutral expert should be the forum for the resolution. Now the authorities concerned, the official claimed, in Pakistan are receiving vibes from the bank to bring in a neutral expert to resolve the issue of disputed projects.
It argues that CoA cannot be constituted by keeping India, the party to the dispute, annoyed. It says CoA can be constituted in case both the parties to the dispute agree on it. “So Pakistan is left with no option but to move a neutral expert. If authorities in Pakistan do not agree with the World Bank’s advice, then India will get another opportunity to constructRattle Hydropower projectwith objectionable designs.”