Pak bid to stall Kishenganga power project work thwarted

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New Delhi, Jan 14 (PTI) Pakistan''s bid to stallconstruction work at the Kishenganga power project in Jammuand Kashmir was thwarted today as it was forced to withdraw apetition in this regard at the International Court ofArbitration.

During the first hearing of the Kishenganga ArbitrationCourt in The Hague in The Netherlands, the Indian side put upa spirited argument for construction of the 330-MW project onKishenganga, a tributary of the Jhelum river, sources said.

Pakistan had moved a petition for stopping work as an"interim measure" till the case over the disputed project wasdecided by the court.

After the Indian argument, Pakistan was forced towithdraw its petition, the sources said.

Had the court, headed by Justice Stephen M Schwebel,agreed for the interim measure, work at the site would have tobe stopped.

Pakistan had moved the court last year under the 1960Indus Water Treaty, which governs the jurisdication overcommon rivers and provides for arbitration by theInternational Court if India and Pakistan are not able toresolve any matter bilaterally.

Pakistan is contending that the power project would leadto diversion of Kishenganga waters to Bonar Madumati Nallah,another tributary, which falls in Wullar Lake.

India rejects Pakistan''s objections on this front.

Incidentally, this is the first case referred tointernational arbitration under the provisions of the IndusWater Treaty, 1960.

Earlier on the 450 MW Baglihar power project, India andPakistan had sought the services of a neutral expert appointedby the World Bank to resolve their differences over the planton the Chenab river.

After hearing both the sides and inspecting the site,World Bank arbitrator gave a verdict in favour of the project.

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