Pakistan on Tuesday said that India has withdrawn the design of the Miyar hydroelectric project in Himachal Pradesh following its objections. Earlier, Pakistani media reports claimed that the Indian delegation agreed to halt the progress on Miyar hydroelectric project’s design after accepting Pakistan’s reservations. However, Indian officials maintained that India never agreed to halt the project.
“We may say that the media reports about India agreeing to halt Miyar project are factually incorrect and wrong. India never agreed to halt the project,” the Indian officials said.
The development came as the Permanent Indus Commission (PIC) meeting of the Indus Water Commissioners of Pakistan and India was held today on water issues for a second day here.
The Indian delegation for the two-day meeting was led by Indus Water Commissioner P K Saxena while the Pakistani delegation was headed by Mirza Asif Saeed Baig.
Pakistan’s Ministry of Water and Power said in a statement that the discussions were held on India’s proposed Miyar, Lower Kalnai and Pakal Dul hydropower projects as well as on matters pertaining to the exchange of data and conducting tours and meetings of the Indus commission.
“On (the) Miyar hydropower project, India has withdrawn its design after Pakistan had made objections on it in the previous meetings of the commission,” the statement said.
It said the “Indian side also agreed to a tour of inspection for Pakistan’s Indus Commission which is expected to be arranged before August 2017.” However, the ministry did not share any more details of the inspection tour.
The ministry said that discussions were held on Pakistan’s prior objections relating to pondage and freeboard of Lower Kalnai and freeboard and spillway of Pakal Dul hydropower projects in Jammu and Kashmir.
“Indian side has agreed to reconsider Pakistan’s observations on these projects and will respond in the next meeting of the Commission,” it said.
The ministry said the Pakistani side demanded from India to provide the outflows from Baglihar and Salal dams on the Chenab river during the flood season to help in issuing of early flood warnings.
“Indian side has agreed to consider Pakistan’s request and it is expected that India would start providing the required data starting from the coming flood season,” it said.
Pakistan has raised objections over the designs of the three projects, including Miyar hydroelectric project, located in Himachal Pradesh’s Lahaul Spiti district, Lower Kalnai and Pakal Dul, both being built in Jammu and Kashmir, and demanded access to the sites, the report had said.