Tarun Gogoi urges Central Govt. to sign water-sharing treaty with China

Friday, November 19, 2010

GUWAHATI - Assam Chief Minister Tarun Gogoi has said that he would request Prime Minister Manmohan Singh to sign a water-sharing treaty with China ahead of the construction of the mega dams on Brahmaputra River.

“We are taking up the issue very seriously. I will talk to Foreign Secretary Nirupama Rao to know what Chinese authorities have told her about the dam. But right now, I will request the Prime Minister to consider signing a water-sharing treaty with China,” Gogoi told reporters.

Reiterating his government’s stand on the 2,000 MW Subonsiri Lower Hydroelectric project of the NHPC at Gerukamukh in Arunachal Pradesh, Gogoi said: “If it benefits Assam, why should we oppose it?”

The Brahmaputra flows 918km before falling into the Bay of Bengal. China’s plan is to dam the Brahmaputra and divert 200 billion cubic metres of water every year to the country’s north-east regions of Shaanxi, Hebei, Beijing and Tianjin.

Gogoi further said he hopes to start the initial talks regarding the United Liberation Front of Asom (ULFA) cadres joining the mainstream.

“We are getting good response from ULFA and we hope we can start initial talks with them by November or December,” said Gogoi.

Gogoi added that Arunachal Pradesh and Meghalaya will also be helping Assam to deal with the ULFA issue. (ANI)

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