27 October, 2020

1960: Pakistan

The Indus Water Treaty was the last piece in the long divorce between India and Pakistan

1960: Pakistan
Kuldip Nayar, Editor and Peace Activist
The Indus Water Treaty, signed in 1960, was the last piece in the long divorce between India and Pakistan. Refugees from Pakistan settled in Punjab were unhappy about the fertile lands they had lost, while in Pakistan the government was hysterical that India—since it controlled Kashmir—could stop the flow of water in its rivers. The treaty led to the building of canals in Punjab, which would make it the breadbasket of India, while Pakistani fears were assuaged through guarantees with the World Bank. The treaty is the greatest example of water negotiations in the world, and has survived all the wars since then. But when Manzur Qadir, the Pakistani foreign minister, tried to encourage Ayub Khan and Nehru to talk about Kashmir during the signing, they flatly refused.


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