SYL issue dumped forever, says Punjab CM

Moga (Punjab), Dec 8 (IANS) Punjab Chief Minister Parkash Singh Badal on Thursday said the denotification of land acquired for Satluj-Yamuna Link (SYL) canal and its handover to original owners and their legal heirs had put the issue forever under wraps.

He said nobody would be allowed to construct the Sutlej-Yamuna Link canal in Punjab in future.

Addressing a ‘Paani Bachao, Punjab Bachao’ (Save water, save Punjab) rally at Chilli Chahal village near Moga, Badal also vowed not to allow even a drop of Punjab river water to be shared with other states.

“Punjab neither has spare water to share, nor any need for the construction of Sutlej-Yamuna Link canal. Nobody will be allowed to construct this canal in future. Due to the state government’s initiative, this issue is dead for all times to come.”

He said the Shiromani Akali Dal-Bharatiya Janata Party government in Punjab did its best within the legal framework to safeguard the state’s interests.

Accusing the Congress of betraying Punjab and its people, Badal said the party had initiated work on canal construction to share river water with Haryana.

He said the recent resignation of 42 Congress legislators from the Punjab assembly and former Chief Minister Amarinder Singh from the Lok Sabha over the Supreme Court verdict on Presidential Reference on the canal issue were “mere gimmicks to mislead people”.

“Amarinder Singh, now trying to become a martyr by smearing blood on his little finger and showing lip sympathy on the SYL issue, was the prime conspirator along with the then Congress high command and Prime Minister Indira Gandhi, who performed the ground-breaking ceremony of the SYL canal at Kapoori village in Punjab way back in 1982,” the Chief Minister said.

Punjab Deputy Chief Minister Sukhbir Singh Badal said leaders and people of Punjab are ready to sacrifice their lives to save the state’s water. He warned people against the alleged efforts of the Congress and the Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) to mislead them.

The elections to the 117-member Punjab assembly will be held early next year.

–IANS

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