Beijing, June 5 : China signed a Memorandum of Understanding with India today for providing India with flood season hydrological data of Brahmaputra/Yarlung Zangbo which will help protect people living on the banks of the river.
External Affairs Minister Pranab Mukherjee held talks with his Chinese counterpart Yang Jiechi in Beijing today and after their discussion on the matter, India's Ambassador to China, Nirupama Rao and the Vice Minister of China's Ministry of Water Resources, Hu Siyi, signed the MoU.
The two governments had decided to set up an expert-level mechanism to discuss interaction and cooperation on the provision of flood season hydrological data, emergency management and other issues regarding trans-border rivers during Chinese President Hu Jintao's visit to India in November 2006.
During Prime Minister Manmohan Singh's visit to Beijing in January this year, India had thanked China for providing flood season hydrological data to the country.
The Brahmaputra, also called Tsangpo-Brahmaputra, is a trans-boundary river and one of the major rivers of Asia.
From its origin in southwestern Tibet as the Yarlung Tsangpo River, it flows across southern Tibet to break through the Himalayas in great gorges and into Arunachal Pradesh where it is known as Dihang.
During the monsoon season (June-October), river floods are common.
Deforestation in the Brahmaputra watershed has resulted in increased siltation levels, flash floods, and soil erosion in critical downstream habitat, such as the Kaziranga National Park in middle Assam. Massive flooding causes huge losses to crops, life and property.