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Undala Alam - India and Pakistan's truculent co-operation - is 50 years enough?

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Presentation at STEPS Centre Water Seminar, 16 November 2010. Dr Undala Alam, Queen's University

Presentation at STEPS Centre Water Seminar, 16 November 2010. Dr Undala Alam, Queen's University

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  • 1. India and Pakistan’s truculent cooperation: Is 50 years enough?
    Dr UndalaAlam
    Queen’s University, Belfast
    Institute for Development Studies
    Brighton, 16 November 2010
  • 2.
  • 3.
  • 4. Improbable cooperation
    August 1947 Partition divides Punjab and irrigation system – headworks to India, canals to Pakistan
    1 April 1948, East Punjab (India) closes tap on Sutlej
    Mayhem. Disrupted production systems, refugees. Profound vulnerability.
    1948-51 bilateral efforts fail.
    1952-60 Multilateral talks with World Bank mediating succeed. Sign Indus Waters Treaty, 19 Sept 1960
  • 5.
  • 6. The Indus Waters Treaty
    Provisions Regarding Eastern Rivers
    Provisions Regarding Western Rivers
    Provisions Regarding Eastern Rivers and Western Rivers
    Financial Provisions
    Exchange of Data
    Future Co-operation
    Permanent Indus Commission
    Settlement of Differences and Disputes
    Emergency Provision
    General Provisions
    Final Provisions
    Exchange of notes between Government of India and Government of Pakistan
    Agricultural use by Pakistan from certain tributaries of the Ravi [Article II (3)]
    Agricultural use by India from the Western Rivers [Article III (2)(c)]
    Generation of hydro-electric power by India on the Western Rivers [Article III (2)(d)]
    Storage of waters by India on the Western Rivers [Article III (4)]
    Neutral expert [Article IX (2)]
    Court of Arbitration [Article IX (5)]
    Transitional arrangements [Article II (5)]
  • 7. Hydrologic ‘divorce’
    Sun Bright Rivers Can Jive Indefinitely - Sutlej Beas Ravi Chenab Jhelum Indus
    India: 3 Eastern rivers – Sutlej, Beas, Ravi (20%)
    Pakistan: 3 Western rivers – Chenab, Jhelum, Indus (80%)
    Equitable utilisation* AND appreciable harm*
    Permit India’s new uses
    Protect Pakistan’s existing uses and new ones
    India: US$ 175 million
    Pakistan: IBF US$ 838 million, India c.£62 million
    Permanent Indus Commission (PIC)
    Dispute resolution – Neutral Expert, Court of Arbitration
  • 8. Not enough
    Recent and persistent calls to revoke it
    India: Pakistan attacks us
    Indian parliament 2001
    Mumbai 2008
    Pakistan: India steals our water
    Baglihar (Chenab) 2005
    Kishanganga (Jhelum) 2010
    J&K: We was robbed
    Treaty ignores us
    Our water, our electricity
  • 9. Dams are good
    Climate change recast dams
    Hydroelectricity as carbon neutral = good
    Water storage – safeguard against variability
    But previous problems not disappeared
    Himalayas = HYDROPOWER + STORAGE
    Increasing demand for energy/water
    India/Pakistan – programme of development
    More controversial dams en route
  • 10. Is the Treaty upto it?
    Negotiated not fought (12 years)
    Signed & ratified
    Backdated to 1 April 1960 - temporary agreements
    Predates 3 principles in 1997 Draft UN Convention on the Law of Non-Navigational Uses of International Watercourses*
    Implemented within allotted time (10 years)
    Maintained (50 years)
    HOT: Survives three wars (1965, 1971, 1999), nuclear arms race (c.80 warheads each), military skirmishes
    WORDS: Controversial dams (Baglihar, Kishanganga)
    Pakistan’s economic survival – alternative Ad hoc Agreements (Suhrawardy)
    Increased water to India
  • 11. Baglihar dam
    Salman, S. (2008) The Baglihar difference and its resolution process: A triumph for the Indus Waters Treaty? Water Policy 10, 105-117.
    India: Run-of-river HEP, Chenab river in J&K
    144.5 m high
    Installed capacity 450 MW, final 900 MW
    Planned late 1990s, started 2002
    Pakistan: Contravenes IWT under Annex D (Para 8) following criteria:
    (a) Operating pool can be raised artificially
    (c) Operating pool too big
    (e) Gated spillway – existence & height
    (f) Turbines’ intake too low
  • 12. Resolution process
    Bilateral: India/Pakistan discuss in PIC
    Jan 2005: Pakistan unhappy, asks Bank to intervene
    India disagrees: still ‘question’ not a ‘difference’
    3 rounds to agree on intervention
    Pakistan – legal, India – engineering
    Bank’s involvement
    1st request since Sept 1960
    Use ICSID rules to determine ‘consultation’: Names, transparency (writing, share documents, all parties in meetings)
    May 2005: India/Pakistan agree to a Neutral Expert – Prof. Raymond Lafitte
  • 13. Process cont.
    1st meeting: June 2005, Paris. NE meets India/Pakistan. India submits documents, Pakistan responds, India responds
    Site visit: Early Oct 2005. NE with Indian/Pakistani delegations visits Baglihar dam.
    2nd meeting: Late Oct 2005, Geneva. NE meets India/Pakistan to discuss issues arising from site visit.
    3rd meeting: May 2006, London. India/Pakistan presented their views.
    4th meeting: Oct 2006, Paris. NE presents draft detemination to India/Pakistan
    5th meeting: Nov 2006, Washington DC. India/Pakistan present comments.
    Final determination: February 2007.
  • 14. NE’s determination
    Criteria under which IWT contravened
    (a) Operating pool can be raised artificially
    (c) Operating pool too big
    (e) Gated spillway – existence & height
    (f) Turbines’ intake too low
    Max. design flood: India’s higher value (16,500 m3/s) was prudent due to uncertainties arising from flood analysis and climate change
    Spillway, ungated or gated: Gates due to site conditions, otherwise risk flooding. Alternative is a higher crest but more expensive.
    Spillway, level of the gates: India’s design as okay, but lower by 8 m to protect against upstream flooding
    Water level’s artificial raising : India lower crest from 844.5 m asl to 843 m asl
    Pondage: Fixed max. pondage size lower than both India/Pakistan’s values
    Power intakes’ level: India to raise level by 3 m to 821 m asl
  • 15. Conclusion
    Can India/Pakistan negotiate a better deal today?
    IWT is well crafted –
    Recognises countries’ limitation
    Ensures access to water
    Acknowledges limits to knowledge
    Leaves the door open to the future
    Cooperation = political will
    India: Jawaharlal Nehru – Manmohan Singh
    Pakistan: Ayub Khan – Asif Zardari