Delegation from Bangladesh fails to arrive in Delhi for river panel meeting

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News:Bangladesh has not sent a delegation for the Joint River Commission (JRC) meeting with India that was scheduled to be held in New Delhi.This has also delayed the agreement on sharing of the waters of Feni river.

Facts:

About Joint River Commission(JRC):

  • The Joint River Commission came into existence as a result of the Indo-Bangladesh Treaty of Friendship,1972.
  • It is among the oldest bilateral mechanisms of India that helps in harnessing the waters of the rivers that both countries share.
  • It was established with a view to maintain liaison in order to ensure the most effective joint efforts in maximizing the benefits from common river systems. 
  • The JRC is headed by the Water Resources Ministers of both the countries.
  • India and Bangladesh share at least 54 rivers.Hence,the JRC is crucial to avoid any disputes arising out of these common water resources.

About Feni River dispute:

  • Feni River is a river in southeastern Bangladesh.It is a trans-boundary river with an ongoing dispute about water rights. 
  • The Feni River originates in South Tripura district and flows through Sabroom town and then enters Bangladesh.
  • The dispute over the sharing of the Feni River between India and Bangladesh has been long-standing. 
  • The dispute was first taken up between India and Pakistan (before the independence of Bangladesh) in 1958 during a Secretary-level meeting in New Delhi. 
  • In August 2019,India and Bangladesh held a water secretary-level meeting where it was agreed to collect data and prepare water-sharing agreements for seven rivers Manu, Muhuri, Khowai, Gumti, Dharla, Dudhkumar and Feni.