India’s Aqua Bomb

By Sarfraz Ahmed Rana.

In the recent aggressive campaign, after the flopped premiere of surgical strikes that earns a very bad World opinion.  With no exception of India,  Modi’s designs to value “Aqua bomb”  to take an advantage of upper riparian state by nullifying one of “world’s  most successful water sharing entente” Indus Water Treaty  in order to press the parched throat of Pakistan whose agronomics increasingly depends on the source rivers of the Indus basin in India followed the present Indian government’s rhetoric “we shall make Pakistan bleed” without the engagement of troops in the battlefield. India following its second strategic mode of “Defensive Offense” in the wake of rampant contentious environment led to the abrogation of South Asian Association Regional Cooperation (SAARC) summit in an attempt to isolate Pakistan internationally as well as regionally contrary to the imperatives of international relations and foreign policy in the twenty-first century matches national interest to national interest nothing above all else. The Indian dreams to isolate Pakistan yet to guarantee unless Pakistan acts ridiculously in dealing with its state of affairs following the unpleasant previous legacy that jeopardises relations with neighbours and the major powers of the world at the cost of its own national interest

In the second mode of strategy to set upon against Pakistan “Doval Doctrine” argues to outline the vulnerabilities and faultlines of Pakistan no matter wherever and whatsoever the vulnerabilities are rather to imprison Pakistan into international isolation, deteriorate the image on the grounds of manipulative ways, fan the flames to internal security through subversive activities, to make sure the internal political divide and to strangulate Pakistan’s long ago weaker economy. India’ growing war hysteria and increased belligerence intends to interfere the Indus water treaty is being unprecedentedly threatened by the Indian government to reconsider the treaty looking into the probabilities with the aim to suspend the accord which has not been defied even during the worst case scenarios amidst the two countries engaged in four hot wars yet, this time, New Delhi making sure not to leave any stone unturned to be rough and tough against Islamabad have in mind to make Pakistan a pariah state in the affairs of world. In the response to Uri attack on a military base in an Indian held Kashmir, Indian Premier chaired a meeting few days ago accompanying National Security Adviser Ajit Doval the chief architect of India’s great variation of its strategic culture and posture development along with some other senior officials signaled likelihood to suspend Indus Water Treaty any time in the future to make sure that all cards utilise well to thwart the prosperity of energy stricken country by destroying Pakistani green fields and large agriculture industry at first. Notwithstanding, Pakistan categorically responded saying any such effort to violate the treaty will be taken as “act of war”.

Indus water treaty comprises the water of six rivers of Sutlej, Beas, Ravi, Indus, Jhelum and Chenab. The waters of three rivers allocated to India and rest three designated to Pakistan in the pact respectively whether to cultivate the lands, built hydroelectric dams or any other purpose within the given framework of impeccable water agreement. A 2011 report prepared for the U.S. Senate Foreign Relations Committee called the Indus pact “the world’s most successful water treaty” for having withstood wars between India and Pakistan in the decades since it was signed. Lets us just talk about probabilities of growing  Indian rhetoric to use water as a powerful non-military alternative making Pakistan scream!!! How does a treaty carry a weight in international relations and what kind of ramifications are going to be if either party violates a formal agreement?

In the modern day history, from economic to environment and nuclear proliferation to human rights, there are numerous treaties regulates the international order, provides the fundamental mechanism to settle the disputes preventing the war by adopting peaceful means across the globe. The article 13 of the United Nations urged that “every state has the duty to carry out its obligations arising from treaties and from other sources of international law.”

The first and foremost aspect of Indus Water Treaty that the negotiations had facilitated by the one of world most credible institution – World Bank in 1960 helped to shape the fundamental framework of the pact and sets upon its role as mediator in times if crises emerge and financier, financing for the construction of canals and storage facilities that help in transferring water from Indian side to Pakistan. Despite the fact that the role of world bank in Indus Water treaty is too narrow and purely procedural yet any misadventure by New Delhi will necessitate World Bank to intervene as treaty demands to appoint a neutral expert or to set up a court of arbitration.

On the technical grounds, India does not have sufficient capacity to store the outflow of the water at a very short notice; it requires a time and a lot of finances to build more dams and barrage facilities to create a little trouble for Pakistan. In a meanwhile, India either could not manage to alter the flow of water to the other part of the country due to the geographic sensitivities, any water blockade for a long time perhaps causes flooding in the India-held Kashmir.

Having another perspective of Water Interdependence in mind, the geography of South Asian countries is complex in a way that their water reliance inevitably linked together extended through several water pacts or memorandum of understandings with Bangladesh, Nepal and China. India controls the stream of water with regard to Indus Water Treaty as an upper riparian state but in the cases of Nepal and China, India does not have the prerogative of the upper riparian state to enjoy. In worst case scenario, if India goes to the extent to abrogate the treaty with Pakistan, India also would lose a moral ground to complain to the international community to mediate If China blocks the supply to the Indian Brahmaputra project that already becomes a bone of contention between China and India.

Nonetheless, India neither has the ability to block the Pakistan’s share of waters nor it has genuine intentions to abrogate the Indus Water Treaty due to its complicated nature and consequences which might India has to face politically and diplomatically. Indian unprecedented assertion merely to deviate the international attention from the boiling Kashmir issue that touches the peaks for the first time in the history of Kashmir movement. India does not have a choice less than to ensure in the Indus Water Treaty the fullest future cooperation to the possible extent instead to use an “Aqua Bomb” as a bargaining chip in order to get incentive on simmering Kashmir situation.

Sarfraz Rana

The writer is the columnist and International Relations Research Scholar.

Follow  on twitter; @ranasarfraz3417

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