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SAD condemns AAP govt for expressing its willingness to construct the SYL


Chandigarh: condemned the Bhagwant Mann led Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) government for expressing its willingness to construct the Sutlej Yamuna Link (SYL) canal but for pressure from opposition parties as well as difficulties in acquiring land for the canal which had been returned back to farmers by the erstwhile SAD government led by S Parkash Singh Badal.

Terming this contention in the apex court as tantamount to backstabbing farmers, senior SAD leader Bikram Singh Majithia said “we proudly oppose the construction of the SYL canal which will be only constructed over our dead bodies. We challenge the AAP government to relay this to the Supreme Court. Punjabis and the SAD will never let the grand conspiracy of AAP Convener Arvind Kejriwal to hand over the State’s river waters to Haryana to succeed at any cost”.

Explaining the manner in which the AAP government had betrayed Punjab in the apex court, Mr Bikram Majithia said “Punjab’s counsel blamed opposition parties as well as problems in acquiring land from farmers as the reasons for delay in construction of the SYL”. He said this meant that the Punjab government was committed to constructing the SYL canal and had admitted so in court. “This is also in line with the affidavit filed by the AAP government in Delhi in the Supreme Court calling for Haryana and Delhi being granted their share of waters from the SYL canal”. He said AAP Rajya Sabha mp Sushil Gupta was also on record as having promised the people of Haryana that once AAP formed the government in 2024 it would ensure water from the SYL canal reached each and every corner of Haryana.

Asserting that the SYL canal was history, Mr Majithia said “farmers were given repossession of land acquired for building the canal by former chief minister Parkash Singh Badal in 2016. I am proud that I was the revenue minister at the time and organized the function to hand over the land titles to the farmers. In such a situation no land exists in Punjab which can be used to take the State’s river waters to Haryana”.

Mr Majithia also highlighted how 109 out of the 128 blocks in Punjab had been declared as dark zones due to severe depletion of groundwater. “There is a real danger of Punjab being turned into a desert if the Aam Aadmi Party’s conspiracy to hand over the State’s waters to Haryana succeeds. The SAD is committed to safeguarding the waters of Punjab and no sacrifice is too big to achieve this goal. We will not let one drop of additional water go to Haryana”.

The former minister also condemned the AAP government for succumbing to the orders of AAP Convener Arvind Kejriwal and not arguing the case with conviction by failing to stress the Riparian Principle by way of which Punjab has an inalienable right over the water flowing in its territory. “It seems the chief minister has surrendered Punjab’s rights over its waters to Haryana in the same manner in which he has surrendered Punjab’s right to Chandigarh”.

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