A day after Punjab Chief Minister Parkash Singh Badal claimed that his government had scrapped Clause 5 of the Punjab Termination of Agreements Act (PTAA), 2004, Punjab Congress leader Sunil Jakhar on Saturday this was not true.
“Section 5 of PTAA has never been scrapped and it is totally shocking that the CM of Punjab is misinformed on this important issue related to Punjab’s water which they have been making a big issue,” said Jakhar while speaking to The Sunday Express. “The Chief Minister, who is seeking public sympathy on the SYL issue, and is asking people to get ready to make any sacrifice on the SYL issue, is not aware that what exactly he was asking for from the people.”
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“If Shakeel Ahmad (senior Congress leader) had said so (on clause 5 of PTAA) then it is different thing but if Punjab Chief Minister is saying so that the clause has been scrapped it is shocking and it also establishes that they are trying to make it an emotive issue and not bothered about what the facts are,” said Jakhar. “The CM should explain when and where this section was scrapped as people of the state would like to know about this important happening. The SAD have been talking a lot. What they should do is show the records of such important development.”
On Friday Punjab CM, who was talking on Satluj-Yamuna Link (SYL) canal issue in every village during his ‘sangat darshan’ programme at Nakodar assembly constituency, said that the Clause 5 had been scrapped. He, however, was silent on the question of when the clause was scrapped. Scrapping the clause was part of the party’s pre-election manifesto since 2007. It requires Punjab to maintain the existing level of river water supply to Haryana and Rajasthan.