GUWAHATI, July 3 � India has not yet been able to make out a strong case to force China from diverting the river Brahmaputra despite the fact that the Inter-Ministerial committee discussed the issue on several occasions. Most of the projects envisaged to use the water of the river to stake claim on the basis of water users rights also remained on paper.
Highly placed official sources told The Assam Tribune that to prevent China from diverting the river, India would have to build up a strong case, but so far the projects remained on paper only and if China decides to divert the river now, India does not have a strong case to put before the international forum.
The Inter-Ministerial committee is also of the view that the India should not blindly accept China�s assurance that it would not divert the river as the neighbouring country is facing severe shortage of water. Moreover, China has already launched two projects on the river, even as China claimed that the projects were run of the river projects and would not affect the flow of the river. In fact, China did not inform India of the projects and only when confronted with satellite images, the country accepted the fact.
Sources said that for the last five years, India has been discussing the need to augment the use of the river to stake claim under the international water users rights. But till date, hardly any water of the river is being used by India and the plans and discussions in this regard remained on paper. �Having blind faith on the assurance of China may become disastrous for India in the days to come. If India does not augment use of the water of the river, we would not have a strong case to present before the International court,� sources said.
Official sources further said that though a number of projects on the Siang river in Arunachal Pradesh were planned, those remained on paper only and no one knows whether those would be implemented or not. India must put some of the projects on ground immediately to increase the use of water of Brahmaputra to prevent the designs of China to divert water of the river, sources added. Lack of planning on the part of Government of India also came to fore as instead of launching the projects on the pipeline on the Siang river, the Subansiri project was launched first. To prevent China from diverting the Brahmaputra, use of water of the river should have been increased first before going for other projects but that was not done.
Replying to a question on whether China can be trusted in this regard, sources admitted that there is no question trusting anyone on such issues. India should build up its own defence in the international forum as according to inputs available, China has been planning to make more use of the water of the river in the days to come to prevent drought like situation in some parts of the country.