Verdict on Baglihar may not end dispute: Pak officials
The World Bank expert on Baglihar project will deliver the verdict on Feb 12.Updated:
The World Bank appointed neutral expert on Baglihar project may deliver a verdict partially endorsing the project's structure but Pakistan's officials feel it may not end the row.
Raymond Lafitte, the neutral expert appointed to address a "difference" between India and Pakistan who will give his verdict on Monday, has not accepted Islamabad's premise that the dam violates the 1960 Indus Water Treaty, Dawn quoted officials saying.
But Lafitte also rejected India's position that there was no need for changes in the dam as it fulfilled all requirements of the treaty.
In doing so, Lafitte is expected to suggest that India reconsider the size and design of the spillway it is constructing at Baglihar, the newspaper said.
Pakistan Prime Minister Shaukat Aziz has said in the past that Pakistan which approached the World Bank would abide by Lafitte's verdict.
The Pakistan official reportedly cautioned that everything would not go Pakistan's way. However, he was hopeful that the recommendations would not cause "material loss" to Pakistan.
"On many points it (the report) favours India while on others it favours Pakistan," said a technical expert in Washington who has seen the draft verdict circulated by Lafitte last year, which made Pakistan to re-argue its case, making him to postpone his final verdict to February 12.
"It will be up to India and Pakistan to continue to quarrel over this dispute or use their new found spirit of reconciliation to settle it," the expert said.
First Published: Feb 10, 2007 16:39 IST