Lok Sabha

March 27, 2017

Saugata Roy speaks on the Indo-Bangla Teesta Water Treaty

Saugata Roy speaks on the Indo-Bangla Teesta Water Treaty


Madam, I am raising a matter of urgent public importance.

There are different stands on water pacts with Pakistan and Bangladesh agreed into by the Centre. The Government is pushing for the Teesta pact. This week India demonstrated two very different approaches in sharing water resources with its neighbours. Pakistan will have to live with the fact that India plans to continue utilisation of its allocation under the Indus Water Treaty as it refused to countenance any change in the design of the Baglihar Dam in Jammu and Kashmir.

Meanwhile, on the Bangladesh front, the Modi Government is working hard to conclude the Teesta Water-sharing Agreement with Sheikh Hasina’s Government, unperturbed by West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee’s statement expressing deep concern for not having been consulted on the Teesta Water-sharing Agreement between India and Bangladesh. The Centre has said that stakeholders would be consulted at the right time in the spirit of cooperative federalism. A Government spokesman has said that just as the Centre and the State had collaborated in the Land Boundary Agreement, there would be consultations here too. Mamata Banerjee, the Chief Minister said, “We were told that the signing of the treaty would be on May 25 following the visit of the Bangladesh Prime Minister from April 7 to 10”.

Other northeastern States’ CMs have been invited to the signing, she said, but not she. She also said. “I have very good relations with Sheikh Hasina. I took the initiative in initiative in resolving the chhit mahal problem, that is, the enclave problem – the land boundary and the exchange of enclaves issue with the Bangladesh Government”. But when it comes to protecting the interests of Bengal, Mamata Banerjee said, “I shall not put the seal of approval on any treaty without knowing what it is about”. She said. “The Centre is interacting directly with the District Magistrate through video conference. Why is the Centre bypassing the State Government?” “I strongly protest against this attitude of the Centre of going behind the back of the State Government for an international agreement”. We strongly protest any attempt to sign the Teesta Treaty without the consent of the West Bengal Government.

Thank you.