On Wednesday, the Union Cabinet approved an Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) between India and Bangladesh on the withdrawal of 1.82 cusecs (cubic feet per second) of water from the Feni river by India for a drinking water supply scheme for Sabroom town in Tripura.
Feni river and dispute –
- The Feni river, which forms part of the India-Bangladesh border, originates in the South Tripura district, passes through Sabroom town on the Indian side, and meets the Bay of Bengal after it flows into Bangladesh.
- According to the Indian government press release, there has been no water-sharing agreement between the countries on the Feni previously.
- The dispute over the sharing of the river water has been long-standing. It was taken up between India and Pakistan (before the independence of Bangladesh) in 1958 during a Secretary-level meeting in New Delhi.
Importance of India-Bangladesh MoU –
The MoU stands to benefit Sabroom town on the southern tip of Tripura. The government release said: “The present supply of drinking water to Sabroom town is inadequate. The groundwater in this region has high iron content. Implementation of this scheme would benefit over 7000 population of Sabroom town.”
Other projects on the Feni –
In Tripura, a 150-metre long, 4-lane bridge across the Feni is being built between India and Bangladesh, where the river forms the border between the two countries. It is expected to be completed by March 2020 at an estimated expenditure of Rs 73 crore.
Source – The Indian Express