India To Expedite Work On Kishanganga Water Project In IHK

7 June 2008
Associated Press of Pakistan

New Delhi: India said on Saturday the work on Kishanganga water project will be expedited in occupied Kashmir near the Line of Control citing the reason that Pakistan is also constructing a power project on the same river on its side. It is to mention here that during the meeting of Indus Water Commissioners held recently in Lahore had raised objections over design of India’s Kishanganga project which was described as violation of Indus Basin Treaty. Media reports quoting Indian Minister of State for Power Jairam Ramesh said in Srinagar, the work on the 300 Megawatt Kishanganga power project was in advanced stage. “We need to speed up work on the project as Pakistan is also constructing a power project on the river with Chinese assistance, “ he said. Talking to reporters he claimed the power project was based on ‘run of the water’ and did not involve storage of water at any stage. When asked about the rationale behind construction two projects on the same river while one of the two will not be viable, Ramesh said the project had “great strategic and “foreign policy implications.” “I am sure Prime Minister Manmohan Singh must have given a thought to it.” Only the Prime Minister or the External Affairs Minister would be able to comment on the issue, he said. “However, we are determined to implement the project which was approved by the Union Cabinet in 2007,” the minister said. Ramesh said the first phase of the Baghlihar project will be commissioned by March next year. “150 MW will be in the stream by August this year, 150 MW in October and another 150 MW in December, but in power sector, what is on paper is not necessarily what happens,” media reports quoting him said.