Indo-Pak to decide on Kishenganga umpires Tuesday

Last Updated: Monday, July 12, 2010 - 19:07

New Delhi: India and Pakistan will discuss
the issue of appointment of umpires for the Kishenganga hydel
power project arbitration in Islamabad tomorrow.

Sources in the government said that India has sent a
four-member team to Pakistan, comprising officials from the
Water Resources Ministry and the Ministry of External Affairs.

The senior-most member of the team is A K Bajaj,
Chairman of the Central Water Commission. The others are
India`s Indus Commissioner G Ranganatha, his deputy Darpan
Talwar and J N Singh, a Joint Secretary in the MEA.

Pakistan had invited India to discuss the issue of
appointment of three neutral umpires.

Earlier, India had invited Pakistan to hold consultations
here on July 5 and 6 to decide on umpires bilaterally. But
Pakistan suggested that the names of the umpires be exchanged
between the missions of the two countries.

Last week, India once again invited Pakistan for
consultations, saying it was ready to send its representatives
to Islamabad to which the latter agreed.

If the two countries fail to have a consensus on umpires,
then this will be decided by a draw of lots by the World Bank,
the United Nations and some other institutions.

The two countries, which have agreed on international
arbitration, had been having a dispute over how to finalise
the three neutral umpires who will supervise the legal battle
between the two sides in a court of arbitration.

The two countries have already nominated two legal
experts (arbitrators) each to contest their case over the
power project being built in Jammu and Kashmir.

Accusing India of breaching the provisions of the 1960
Indus Water Treaty by diverting the water of the Jhelum
tributary for its Kishenganga hydel power project, Pakistan
sought international arbitration in May this year after the
two countries failed to resolve the issue bilaterally for over
two decades.

Under the provisions of the treaty, the two countries
will have to appoint three umpires, including a Chairman,
before the court of arbitration is set up to decide on the
issue.

PTI



First Published: Monday, July 12, 2010 - 19:07

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