Two neighbouring countries India and Afghanistan have signed the deal to build a dam Sahtoot dam. The Shahtoot Dam will supply water to the Kabul City. Following the deal, the PM Modi called for a ceasefire in Afghanistan in order to end a spike in violence.

Points To Note

  • PM Modi expressed his concern over increase in violence in Afghanistan.
  • The President of Afghanistan, Ashraf Ghani Ahmadzai, also stated that both the countries want a terrorism free region.
  • Ashraf Ghani sought guarantees for stability in Afghanistan.

Sahtoot Dam

  • The Dam is a proposed dam in the Kabul river basin.
  • Construction of the Sahtoot dam will provide drinking, irrigation and Environmental water in the Afghanistan’s Capital Kabul.
  • It will be completed at the cost of about $120 to $305 million.
  • It will be constructed by India.
  • The design of the dam will be completed by Iranian firm. For this, the ministry of water and power have inked an agreement with the Poyab Company of Iran.
  • It will be constructed in order to provide potable water to around 2 million residents of Kabul.
  • The Dam will provide waters to irrigate 4000 hectares of land in Charasiab and Khairabad districts of Kabul.
  • Further, it will provide drinking water to a New City at Deh Sabz.
  • The dam is the second major dam which will be built by India in Afghanistan. India has also built the Friendship Dam or Salma dam which was inaugurated in June 2016.

Memorandum of understanding

In order to start the project, External affairs minister Subrahmanyam Jaishankar and the Afghan counterpart Haneef Atmar have signed the MoU to build the Lalandar or Shatoot dam.

Significance

The project is significant for both the countries. It shows the India’s continuing commitment to support Afghanistan. The signing of the agreement becomes more significant in the backdrop of the troubled peace process with the Taliban and the violence that targets journalists, officials and civil society activists across the country. It also shows India’s strong and long-term commitment of the socio-economic development in Afghanistan.

India-Afghanistan Bilateral Relation

Both countries are close neighbours and strategic partners. India-Afghanistan have committed for a region free from terrorism and extremism. India also supports the “Afghan-led, Afghan-owned and Afghan-controlled” peace process to negotiate with the Taliban.

India-Afghanistan sign deal for Shahtoot Dam India-Afghanistan sign deal for Shahtoot Dam