Govt keeping constant watch on dam constructions by China

Government on Thursday said it is keeping a "constant watch" on all developments relating to the construction of dams by China on rivers flowing from Tibetan plateau.

Last Updated: Nov 11, 2010, 18:25 PM IST

New Delhi: Government on Thursday said it is
keeping a "constant watch" on all developments relating to
the construction of dams by China on rivers flowing from
Tibetan plateau.

"Government is aware of media reports regarding
construction of 55 reservoirs on Tibetan rivers in China
including Brahmaputra.....government is keeping a constant
watch on all developments in this regard," Minister of State
for Water Resources Vincent H Pala said in a written reply to
a question in Rajya Sabha.
He was asked whether government`s attention has been
drawn to a news item that China plans to build 55 reservoirs
on rivers flowing from Tibetan plateau.

To a question relating to construction of dams on
Tsangpo in China, the minister said, "The matter on the
construction of large scale dams on river Yarlung Zangbo, also
called Tsango, impacting the flow of water in down stream
areas in India has been taken up with the Chinese authority at
the highest level."

The Chinese side has "categorically" denied that it is
constructing a dam on the the Brahmaputra river for the
purpose of water diversion, he said.

The minister informed the Upper House that Chinese
Foreign Minister shared information about construction
activity at Zangmu hydropower station during the visit of
External Affairs Minister S M Krishna to Beijing in April this
year.
"He (Chinese Foreign Minister) stated that Zangmu is a
small project with its main function being generation of power
and not water supply. He also stated that the power station
will not store and regulate the volume of water and this would
not have an adverse impact on the downstream areas," the
minister added.

Pala said that if the water from the water resources
projects in Tibet is diverted into some other basin in China,
it may affect the quantity of flow of water in downstream
areas in India during the lean season.

However, if the water is released back in the same
river after after generation of electricity, the effects on
flows of water downstream may not be significant, he added.

PTI