Spokesperson of the Ministry of External Affairs, Vikas Swarup. (Photo: IANS)

Did MEA Hint at Rethinking Indus Waters Treaty With Pakistan?

Amid the diplomatic restraints with Pakistan following the Uri attacks, India insisted the continuity of the Indus Waters Treaty that was signed with Pakistan in 1960, relies on “mutual trust and cooperation” between India and Pakistan.

The 56-year-old Indus Waters Treaty today cropped up in the current hostile Indo-Pak discourse with India making it clear that “mutual trust and cooperation” was important for such a treaty to work.

The assertion came amid calls in India that government should scrap the water distribution pact to mount pressure on Pakistan in the aftermath of audacious Uri terror attack earlier this week.

Pressed further if India will scrap the treaty, he refused to elaborate and only noted that in diplomacy everything was not spelled out and that he has not said that the treaty was not working.

As per the treaty signed between the then Indian Prime Minister Jawaharlal Nehru and Pakistan President Ayub Khan in September 1960, water of six rivers – Beas, Ravi, Sutlej, Indus, Chenab and Jhelum – were to be shared between the two countries.

India controls Beas, Ravi and Sutlej, while Pakistan control Indus, Chenab and Jhelum.

Since the source of the rivers are in India, withholding the water from Pakistan can potentially create droughts and famines in Pakistan in case of a war.

In the press conference, Vikas Swarup said, “We do not need to produce a dossier since the whole world knows Pakistan’s role in sponsoring terror.”

On Thursday, the MEA had summoned the Pakistan envoy to India Abdul Basit to remind him of Pakistan’s commitment to strictly deal with the terrorism and to prevent terrorist acts from taking place in India’s soil.

The Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) and the Indian National Congress (INC) have come out all guns blazing against Pakistan Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif’s address at the UNGA, questioning the neighbouring country’s “complete denial” of terrorism that stems from its soil.

(With inputs from PTI)