Tribune News Service
Moga, February 9. The Punjab Government has welcomed the initiative by Haryana Chief Minister Bhupinder Singh Hooda for exploring a political solution to the water disputes pending for decades between the two states.
Sukhbir said, “I welcome the initiative of the Haryana Government. We are ready to sit together and solve the issues pertaining to water disputes. However, he did not divulge any details.”
Hooda had expressed his desire to solve the water issues with Punjab at a function held in Gurgaon yesterday.
Disputes relating to the Hansi-Butana canal, Dashmesh canal, Sutlej-Yamuna link canal and channelisation of the Ghaggar have been pending between the two states for the past several decades.
The Congress government in Punjab headed by the then Chief Minister Captain Amarinder Singh had, in 2004, annulled all water agreements between the two states by bringing in the Punjab Termination of Agreements Act 2004.
It also resulted in termination of agreements related to the Ravi-Beas waters, which was signed by the chief ministers of Punjab, Haryana and Rajasthan in 1981. Haryana has long been maintaining that due to this, the state was not getting its share of 3.5 MAF of water due to non-completion of construction work on Sutlej-Yamuna link canal.
There is another dispute between the two states on the construction of Hansi-Butana canal by the Haryana Government. The apex court has stayed the linking of this canal with the Bhakra Management Line (BML) on a case filed by the Punjab Government.
Punjab went to the apex court because Haryana had gone to the Central Water Commission against the proposed Dashmesh canal, which was also to be linked with the BML and was meant to irrigate thousands of acres of land in Ropar, Fatehgarh Sahib and Patiala districts.