We're Live Bangla Tuesday, June 06, 2023

Bangladesh-India JRC meeting postponed at the last minute

The Bangladesh India Joint Rivers Commission (JRC) talks scheduled to start from Wednesday was postponed at the last minute, delaying the exchange of data on six common rivers, which was last updated 34 years ago.

 “The meeting is not taking place as we did not get the government order on it,” said KM Anwar Hossain, a member of JRC, Bangladesh, who was supposed to lead the nine-member delegation to India.

 “We will fix a new date after discussing with India.”

Further details on the matter could not immediately be known.

According to a senior official of the Indian Jal Shakti Ministry (formerly water resources ministry), it was Bangladesh which had sought postponement of the JRC meeting, our Delhi correspondent reports.

The two-day talks were scheduled last August when the water resources secretaries of Bangladesh and India met in a JRC meeting in Dhaka. It was decided there that the technical committee of the two countries would sit on December 18 to exchange updated data on six common rivers and discuss the framework for sharing water of those.

The six common rivers are Muhuri, Monu, Dharla, Khowai, Gumti and Dudhkumar.

Earlier in 2011, water-sharing agreements of the Teesta and Feni rivers were finalised, but no comprehensive agreement was signed.

The talks on sharing the water of the six common rivers started in 1985. Since then, delegations from the two countries sat many times, but could not reach an agreement how the water was to be shared.

Bangladesh and India share 54 rivers. The two countries, however, have only one relevant treaty signed in 1996 which oversees the sharing of the Ganges river water.

The JRC was formed to resolve conflicts arising from the sharing of water of transboundary rivers.