Bangladesh and India formed a joint technical committee for conducting a feasibility study on optimum utilisation of the Ganges waters as per the Ganges Water Sharing Treaty. Water Resources Secretary Kabir Bin Anwar said this at a joint media briefing after a water resources secretary level meeting between the two neighboring countries at the State Guest House Meghna on Thursday night, says BSS.
Indian Water Resources Secretary Upendra Prasad Singh was also present during the briefing. Anwar said both the sides agreed to prepare a framework of interim water sharing agreements on seven common rivers–Manu, Muhuri, Khowai, Feni, Gumti, Dharla, Dudhkumar and Teesta. He said fruitful discussions were held for jointly working on the basis of river basins of three rivers-Padma, Meghna and Jamuna. The meeting also dwelt on river management, sharing of knowledge, prevention of water pollution and building of embankments.
He said Delhi assured of not making any interlinking projects in trans-boundary Himalayan rivers without any discussion with Bangladesh. Terming the secretary-level meeting a beginning of new journey, Anwar said, the meeting, which was held after a lapse of more than eight years, can be seen as an important one in progressing bilateral cooperation in the water recourses sector between the two countries.
Upendra Prasad Singh said both the countries will work to collect more updated data on the seven rivers to prepare a framework of interim water sharing. He said the 1996 Ganges Water Sharing Treaty is working satisfactorily in spite of being different challenges including the hydrological changes. At the conclusion of the meeting, both sides singed the joint record of discussions. Earlier, the Indian Water Resources Secretary called on State Minister for Water Resources Zaheed Farooque and Deputy Minister for Water Resources AKM Enamul Hoque Shameem.