Mufti's appeal to Pakistan on utilisation of water resources
3 January 2005
Jammu: A day before the talks between India and Pakistan on the Baglihar hydel power project, the Chief Minister, Mufti Mohammad Sayeed, has appealed to Pakistan to become a facilitator in the economic progress of Jammu and Kashmir by not objecting to the various projects started on the State's water resources. Pakistan objected to several projects being constructed on the rivers flowing through Jammu and Kashmir as it claims that they violate the Indus Water Treaty signed by the late Prime Minister, Jawaharlal Nehru and the Pakistan President, Ayub Khan, in 1960. As per the treaty, restrictions were put on India for the water resources — Indus, Jhelum and Chenab — flowing through Jammu and Kashmir for irrigation or power generation and in lieu, India got the unrestricted rights over Beas, Ravi and Sutlej flowing through Punjab. Talking to The Hindu here, the Chief Minister, Mufti Mohammad Sayeed, said: 'Jammu and Kashmir faces electricity crisis, particularly during the winter season. Now we have to depend on other States to meet our power needs, even though we have rich water resources. Similarly, at present we cannot utilise water to meet our irrigation needs.' ' Projects like Tulbul-Wullar Barrage on Jhelum and Baglihar project on Chenab are essential for improving the economic condition of the people of the State. These projects would help us to become economically self-sufficient.'