A day after The Indian Express reported about the construction of a dam on the Chinese side of the Brahmaputra, New Delhi on Thursday said it was trying to authenticate the report.
Responding to a question about the report, a spokesperson of the Ministry of External Affairs (MEA) said: “We are looking into the report to ascertain whether there are recent developments that suggest any change in the position conveyed to us by the government of China.”
MEA said keeping in mind that the river is an economic resource for the development of the local communities in the two countries, India and China had agreed in November 2006 to establish an expert level mechanism, which has met thrice since then, to discuss trans-border river issues in an institutional way.
During these meetings, India had raised the issue of the dam with China.
The Chinese were also told that such a project might have significant impact on the socio-economic condition of people living downstream.
“The Indian side has also expressed hope that the Chinese side will not undertake such a large scale project or divert the waters of the Brahmaputra. The Chinese side has categorically denied that there is a plan to build any such large scale diversion project on the Brahmaputra,” the ministry said.
China has begun constructing the dam as part of the 540 MW Nagmu hydroelectric project which was inaugurated on March 16.
The Brahmaputra flows for about 1625 kilometre inside the Tibet Autonomous Region of the People’s Republic of China and for a further 918 kilometre inside India.
(With PTI inputs)