Heavy rainfall behind increased flow of water in rivers, PMD official says


Pakistan Meteorological Department’s (PMD) Chief Meteorologist Muhammad Riaz, dismissing reports of India releasing water into Pakistani rivers, said on Monday that heavy rainfall in the Pakistan-India border region was the actual reason behind the increased flow of water in the rivers which resulted in floods.

The local media had reported that several villages in Pakistan were flooded after India released water in River Ravi, River Sutlej, and River Chenab, resulting in a high flood in Nullah Dek near Chahoor in Pasrur tehsil and the destruction of crops in the Shakargarh region.

Riaz said that no reports of India releasing water into Pakistani rivers were received, adding, “The weather systems had generated floods across the border, mainly in the watershed areas of the Chenab, Sutlej and Ravi rivers.”

He said that the water which entered Pakistani villages was no ‘extraordinary’ and the water which did enter the Sialkot and Narowal areas was dealt with by the officials of the district, adding that India had followed its usual procedure and had accommodated water in its dam reservoirs.

Heavy rains also lashed parts of northern India, including Punjab Haryana, Himachal Pradesh, and Chandigarh for three consecutive days. A red alert was also issued for various areas by Indian Meteorological Department.

Reports of India releasing water into Pakistan received much hype because of the ongoing tensions between the two neighbouring countries.

A few days earlier, India revoked its decision to accept Pakistan’s proposal for a meeting between the foreign ministers on the sidelines of United Nations General Assembly (UNGA_ in New York. Later, Indian Army Chief Bipin Rawat had threatened Pakistan with surprise action by Indian security forces.

In a response, Inter-Services Public Relations (ISPR) Director General Major General Asif Ghafoor had stated that Indian army has been indulged in their country’s politics in the wake of corruption scandals whereas he vehemently warned Indian civilian and military’s top brass against putting the burden of their domestic issues on Pakistan’s shoulders.