After Uri attack by PAK, India hints at ending the Indus Water treaty, which has the potential to destroy entire Pakistan.With India launching a diplomatic offensive against Pakistan following Uri terror strike, there seems a possibility of India revisiting the Indus Waters Treaty that was signed with Pakistan in 1960.
Indus water treaty: Immediately after independence India and Pakistan were in conflict over the right on water in rivers. To get the financial support for agriculture from world bank both countries sought to resolve the dispute and Indus treaty came in existence in 1960 after hard negotiations with world bank co-signed it as third party.
The treaty deals with 6 rivers , which are classified in 2 categories.
Eastern rivers: Sutlej,Beas,Ravi and Western rivers:Jhelum, Chenab, Indus
According to treaty India has full right over the water in eastern rivers, and it should let unrestricted flow of western rivers to Pakistan. It doesn’t mean that India can’t use western river’s water, the treaty says that India can use the water in western rivers in “non -consumptive” needs. This right we have not used so far. Here non consumptive means we can use it for irrigation, storage and even for electricity production.
The entire Punjab province in Pakistan is the basin of Indus system. Besides that Pakistan has world’s largest irrigation system. Much of the Pakistan’s population depends on it. So any blockade in Indus flow will definitely going to hit hard to Pakistan’s economy.
There is already great distress in Pakistan for India controlling their major rivers. Blocking of rivers will further increase this. there is a very chance that Pakistan army will take over the government.
Any sudden release of water in rivers will cause flash flood in Pakistan.
In summary Pakistan will become more unstable.
Since India has dams and reservoirs built on these rivers, all India needs is to close the gates of dams on these rivers and block the water supply of Pakistan through these rivers. The effects of this step will be much more severe than any of the nuclear attacks as it will leave their land infertile and uncultivable for long. More importantly, it will not involve firing a single bullet or any ammunition.
India must go on and block the Indus waters by not following the treaty. There are concerns that China may also block the water of Brahmaputra to Assam, but the fact is that Chinese have no dams and reservoirs built on Brahmaputra as of now. Even if they want to do the same with India, it will take them many years before they develop an infrastructure to store the water of Brahmaputra they are blocking. by that time, Pakistan would have faced unprecedented and irreversible damage.