GUWAHATI, March 15 � The Central and State Governments are keeping a close watch on the flow of the river Brahmaputra and so far China has not diverted the flow of the river, said the Water Resources Minister Rajiv Lochan Pegu.
Replying to a Zero Hour question by Prafulla Kumar Mahanta (AGP) in the State Assembly today, Pegu said that the Government of India is keeping a close watch on all developments in China having bearing on India's interests. He also clarified that there was no abnormal change in the flow of the river as feared by certain sections.
The Minister said that after reports of the Siang river drying up in Pasighat in Arunachal Pradesh, the State Government got in touch with the Ministry of Water Resources and the officials of the Government of Arunachal Pradesh. He said that the statement of Tako Dabi, the adviser to Arunachal Chief Minister in this regard was based on visual impression gathered from general public.
Pegu said that the changes of the river flow are natural phenomenon based on different factors including rainfall and the Central Water Commission (CWC) collects and analyzes the hydrological data of all the major rivers of the country and Siang is one of them.
According to CWC records, there is no abnormal change of the water discharge of the Siang river. He said that the water level at Pasighat in the month of February this year fluctuated between 151.62 meter to 151.75 meter and the discharge was between 1175.02 to 1262.11 cumecs. The discharge almost doubled on March 1 due to heavy rainfall. He said that as per data available, there was no abnormal change in the flow of the river in the last two years.
The incoming water level of the Siang at Tuting, very near to the international border with China in the month of February this year varied between 403.44 m to 403.78 m and the river flow varied between 923.9 to 1035.88 cumecs. There is no abnormal change in the flow of the river at the entry point to India, the Minister added.
Earlier, raising the issue during the Zero Hour in the State Assembly, Prafulla Kumar Mahanta expressed concern over the media reports on drying up of the Siang river and said that the possibility of China diverting the course of the river cannot be ruled out. He demanded that the State Government should immediately take up the matter with Centre so that the issue can be strongly taken up with China.
The Speaker of the Assembly, Pranab Gogoi also said that there should be a proper study on the flow of the river.