India conveys concerns to China over Brahmaputra hydro projects

With indications that China has approved three more hydropower projects on the main stream of Brahmaputra River, India Thursday asserted its user rights as a lower riparian State, saying it has conveyed its "concerns" to the Chinese government at the highest level.

New Delhi: With indications that China has approved three more hydropower projects on the main stream of Brahmaputra River, India Thursday asserted its user rights as a lower riparian State, saying it has conveyed its "concerns" to the Chinese government at the highest level.

In her reply to a question in Lok Sabha, Union Water Resources Minister Uma Bharti said that India has urged China to ensure that the interests of downstreams states are not harmed by any activities in upstream areas.

According to her, the government has ascertained that one power-generating unit of the Zangmu hydroelectric project has been operationalised in November, 2014.

The outline of the 12th Five Year Plan for National Economic and Social Development of the People's Republic of China' indicates that three more hydropower projects on the main stream of Brahmaputra river in Tibet Autonomous Region have been approved for implementation by the Chinese Authorities, she said.

"As these projects are considered to be Run of River (RoR) hydro-electric projects, detailed data in this regard is not available to be able to assess the likely impact," she added.

Government of India, she said, "carefully" monitors all developments on the Brahmaputra river.

"As a lower riparian State with considerable established user rights to the water of the river, India has conveyed its views and concerns to the Chinese authorities, at the highest levels of the Government of the People's Republic of China and has urged China to ensure that the interests of downstreams States are not harmed by any activities in upstream areas," the minister said.

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