India has stopped water of three eastern rivers flowing to Pakistan, Indian Minister Arjun Mehghwal said in Bikaner city of Rajasthan.
Speaking to reporters on Sunday, Meghwal, Indian Minister of State for Water Resources, said that 0.53 million acre-feet of eastern rivers, which was flowing into Pakistan, had been stopped. He said, “0.53 million acre-feet water has been stopped from going to Pakistan and has been stored. Whenever Rajasthan or Punjab needs it, that water can be used for drinking and irrigation purposes,” the Indian media reported.
Meanwhile, a reciprocal visit by the Indian team to Pakistan for inspection of projects in Indus River basin this month has been postponed.
During the 115th meeting of the Permanent Indus Commission held in Lahore from August 29-30, 2018, both the commissioners had agreed to undertake the treaty-mandated tours of the Indus basin on both sides. The tour of the Pakistani side was originally scheduled in October 2018 but was postponed because of local bodies elections in Kashmir. Subsequently, the Pakistani team visited India in the last week of January to inspect projects in the Chenab basin.
Pakistani Indus Commissioner Syed Mohammad Mehar Ali Shah and Indian Commissioner PK Saxena along with respective advisers visited the under-construction Indian hydropower projects in Chenab basin namely Pakal Dul (1,000 MW), Ratle (850 MW) and Lower Kalnai (48 MW). The delegation also visited the under-operation Baglihar hydroelectric project (900 MW). The Pakistani commissioner extended an invitation to his counterpart to undertake a visit of the Indus basin on Pakistani side. Mehar Ali Shah said Pakistan has not been informed officially about the postponement of the visit by the Indian side. He said Indian Pakistan’s apprehensions will be deemed correct if Indian team did not visit Pakistan.
Earlier, Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi Sunday said Indian cannot keep suffering forever and ‘enough is enough’ after terror attacks in Pulwama and Uri. “We cannot keep suffering till eternity,” Modi said while addressing the 50th raising day of the Central Industrial Security Force (CISF) as the chief guest in Ghaziabad, Indian media reported.
“The role of security forces like the CISF becomes very significant when the country faces a hostile neighbour that gets encouragement from some elements within the country in hatching conspiracy,” Narendra Modi alleged.
“When the neighbour is very hostile but does not have the capability to fight a war and various conspiracies hatched within the country is getting encouragement from across the border and when the ghastly pictures of terror come to light, under such difficult situations, (ensuring) security of the country and its institutions becomes very challenging,” he said.
He said sometimes the government has to take certain decisions and hence it took some strong steps. Meanwhile, reacting sharply to the Indian Election Commission on Sunday not announcing assembly elections simultaneously with the Lok Sabha polls in Indian Held Kashmir (IHK), former chief minister and National Conference (NC) leader Omar Abdullah said that by not holding assembly elections in the IHK “PM Modi has surrendered to Pakistan, to the militants and to the Hurriyat”.
In a series of tweets immediately after Chief Election Commissioner Sunil Arora announced that the security scenario was not congenial for holding the Lok Sabha and Assembly elections simultaneously in IHK, Omar tweeted, “PM Modi has surrendered to Pakistan, to the militants & to the hurriyat. Well done Modi Sahib. 56 inch chest failed. #slowclap.”
In another tweet he asked; “What happened to @rajnathsingh’s assurance to Lok Sabha & Rajya Sabha as well as to the all party meeting recently in Delhi that all forces would be made available for simultaneous polls?”
“First time since 1996 Assembly elections in J&K are not being held on time. Remember this the next time you are praising PM Modi for his strong leadership”. PDP leader Mehbooba Mufti in her reaction said; “It is very dangerous to keep the state (IHK) in the hands of unelected representatives of the centre.
It will further complicate the problems in the state and the decision of the election commission needs an immediate review.” “Decision to hold only parliamentary elections in J&K confirms sinister designs of GoI. Not letting people elect a government is antithetical to the very idea of democracy. Also a tactic of buying time to disempower people by pushing an agenda that suits their ulterior motives,” Mehbooba tweeted.
Delaying Assembly elections “sows seeds of suspicion” against the centre, she added. Meanwhile, former Uttar Pradesh chief minister Akhilesh Yadav said the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) was dragging the military into politics for electoral gains.
He said that his party never resorted to any kind of marketing using the army
despite the fact that he himself studied in a military school. Attacking the BJP further, Akhilesh Yadav said that the saffron party is known for spreading hatred and can do anything for electoral gains now that Lok Sabha election is around.
“The entire nation knows that the BJP dragged the army into politics,” he said. “BJP can do anything. BJP is known for spreading hate. Sons of poor and farmers are guarding the borders and the BJP leaders are just trying to get votes. BJP can go to any level for votes. They have not even spared cows and Ganga,” he said.
Akhilesh Yadav’s attack on the BJP and Modi has come a day after the Election Commission asked the political parties to “desist from displaying photographs of defence personnel”. The instructions came after the photograph of a hoarding displaying pictures of Indian Air Force (IAF) pilot Abhinandan Varthaman as well as senior BJP leaders was circulated on social media and came to the EC’s notice.