Kaithal MLA Randeep Singh Surjewala of the Congress on Friday put the onus on Prime Minister Narendra Modi to complete the Satluj-Yamuna Link (SYL) canal as per directions of the Supreme Court. He added that the PM should decide on a time frame within which the decision should be implemented. Surjewala maintained that the Congress played a huge role in the construction of the canal and getting the people of Haryana their share of water.
Addressing a press conference, Surjewala said, “In the Punjab Re-organisation Act, 1966 there are provisions for giving the states their share of water. The then Prime Minister Indira Gandhi took the decision on sharing of water and a notification was issued in 1976 called the Indira Gandhi award under which Haryana was awarded 3.5 million acre feet of water. Haryana paid Punjab two installments of Rs one crore each in 1976 and 1979. Parkash Singh Badal was the Chief Minister of Punjab then.”
Surjewala said that despite this decision, both the sides were involved in a legal battle. The work for construction of the canal started in 1982 and 95 percent of it was completed by 1987 under the Congress rule.
On the issue of Punjab Congress MLAs tendering their resignation, Surjewala said that in a democracy each person had the right to express anguish and pain in the manner they choose. “There is no wall between the people of Punjab and Haryana. The people are together. The issue is not of politics. The decision of the SC should be implemented as per the constitution. Why single out the Congress? Punjab CM made the statement that he will not let a drop of water from Punjab go out in the presence of Union Finance Minister Arun Jaitley,” he said, adding that tempers may run high at times, but nothing can be solved by enmity.
“There is a BJP government at the Centre, in Haryana and a SAD-BJP government in Punjab. It is up to the government to ensure that the decision is implemented,” he said.