There are various reasons of contention between India and Pakistan. Water dispute is one of them. Actually 95% of Pakistani rivers get water from the Jammu and Kashmir state of India. Names of these rivers which originate from Jammu and Kashmir are – Sutlej, Jhelum, Chenab, Neelam, etc. In India Neelam river is known as Kishen Ganga. India and Pakistan signed a treaty in 1960 for the distribution of the water of these rivers. This agreement is known as Indus Water Treaty. The Treaty allows India to utilize the water of Kishen Ganga or Neelam for the purpose of power generation. Taking benefit of this right India launched its Kishen Ganga Hydro Power Project in the year 1994 and started diverting some of its water to Wooler Lake of Sopore, Jammu and Kashmir so that its water could be used later on for generating electricity. The work on this project is still continuing and there is a hope that the project will be completed till 2016. But the objection of Pakistan is that due to this project water level of Neelam will decrease which ultimately affect those lands of Pakistan which are dependent on the waters of Neelam for their cultivation. For this Pakistan has been alleging India by saying it as a theft of Pakistani waters and that India is trying to convert the fertile lands of Pakistan into desert. Pakistan has threatened India so many times by saying that it would go to World Bank if India does not solve the water dispute. It may be noted here that according to the provisions of Indus Water Treaty if India and Pakistan fail to resolve their issues on water bilaterally then World Bank could appoint a third party to solve the issue between India and Pakistan. But if this also fails then World Bank will interfere by itself and then both countries will have to accept the decision taken by World Bank. World Bank had done this earlier too when Pakistan sought its help in 2005 on the issue of Bagalihar Dam of India. India then happily accepted the decision of World Bank and agreed to lower the height of Bagalihar Dam on which Pakistan had objection. Indus Water Treaty of 1960 says that Pakistan will get 55,000 cusecs water annually. But, Pakistan is alleging that due to Kishen Ganga Project it got only 13,000 cusecs water in the winter season of last year and 29,000 cusecs water during summer, as a result of which most of its farming lands were dried and the crops lost. Pakistan demanded compensation from India for this loss, but India denied all these allegations of Pakistan by saying that Pakistan is getting its share of water regularly and India is not stopping the flow of its rivers.
There is also a committee in both countries for the discussion on matters relating to the distribution of the waters of Kishen Ganga or Neelam. This committee is known as ‘Indus Commission’ which meets each other on regular basis. Recently Indus Commissioner of Pakistan, Syed Jama’at Ali Shah met with his Indian counterpart Aurang Nathan which headed a three-members’ team of ‘Permanent Commission on Indus Water’ to Pakistan to discuss this issue. The team stayed in Pakistan for five days and discussed the matters in details. It was decided during the meeting that both sides will meet once again in March and then in June and will try to solve the issues related to water disputes. Aurang Nathan had made it clear at Lahore Airport, while returning back to India that the issue was not so serious that it would create a war like situation between India and Pakistan.
But, Pakistani media is repeatedly saying that if the issue of water is not solved then Pakistan will be forced to wage a war on India. On the other hand Jama’at-ut-Dawah, front terror organization of Lashkar-e-Taiba and other terror outfits are openly threatening India that if India does not stop from the theft of Pakistani waters then they will carry out terror attacks in different cities of India. They have said that they will fight against India till the last drop of their blood and will take their waters on any cost. I do not think that such threats will solve any problem, if there is any. It is a reality that India is far stronger than Pakistan geographically, economically and militarily. Such threats are not going to deter India. Pakistani leadership must stop these elements from barking on India because these are the elements due to whom any attempt to bring peace in India and Pakistan fails. India has always said that if there is any objection from Pakistan then it is ready to listen and consider it. Recently India had invited Pakistani Foreign Secretary Salman Bashir for Secretary level talk in Delhi on 25th February which shows the seriousness of India about resolving mutual conflicts through bilateral dialogue. There is not a single problem which cannot be solved through dialogue, but it needs honesty and seriousness. But the attitude of Pakistan is just opposite to it which is evident from the statement of Pakistani Foreign Secretary Salman Bashir who said just after the conclusion of Foreign Secretary level talks in Delhi that his Indian counterpart Nirupama Rao did not talk to him but tried to dictate him. He also said that the additional information about the involvement of JuD Chief, Hafiz Saeed in Mumbai terror attack, was a mere ‘literature’. Making mockery of Indian commitment against terrorism by Pakistan shows that Pakistan is not serious about solving the issue of terrorism.