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Haryana CM Writes to Punjab CM Asserting Rights Over Ravi Waters

May 7, 2018 | By

Chandigarh: The Haryana Chief Minister Manohar Lal Khattar yesterday said that he has written a letter to the Punjab Chief Minister Capt. Amarinder Singh about giving top priority to constructions of a 2.0 to 2.5 m high diversion weir structure across river Ravi with a gravity flow canal off-taking from Dharamkot to Harike Head works. While asserting rights of Haryana and Rajasthan over the Ravi water that being divertible, this water should be utilized for the benefits of the people of the “partner States”.

Punjab CM Capt. Amarinder Singh (L) and Haryana CM ML Khattar (R) [File Photo used for representational purpose only]

In this letter to Capt Amarinder Singh, ML Khattar said: “You may perhaps be aware that the 6th meeting of the Committee formed by Government of India in this regard was held in the Central Water Commission, New Delhi on 23.4.2012. It had assessed the quantum of Minimum Utilizable Water (MUW) as 32 cumecs (equivalent to 0.58MAF) on a sustainable basis. The Committee decided that the proposal for its diversion by constructing a 2.0 to 2.5 m high diversion weir structure across river Ravi with a gravity flow canal off-taking from Dharamkot to Harike Head works was viable. The Committee also opined that any other techno-economically superior alternative that would minimize the problem of implementation of the scheme, may be carried out during preparation of DPR based on actual survey and investigation by an agency to be decided separately at an appropriate forum.”

“Government of India had accordingly asked all the partner States to build consensus on engaging the Bhakra Beas Management Board to undertake feasibility studies and to construct the above project and that Government of Punjab may take follow-up action on the Minutes of meeting held on 23.4.2012”, he added.

Haryana CM has ‘requested’ Punjab CM to direct your concerned officers to take up the proposal in right earnest, adding that he has directed our Chief Secretary and Principal Secretary Department of Irrigation and Water Resources to accord ‘Top Priority to this. He said that Haryana officials shall make it convenient to attend any meeting that your officers may consider necessary on the subject so as to ensure expeditious implementation of this proposal which has already been declared as “National Project” by Government of India.”

It may be recalled that Haryana, Rajasthan and Delhi are non-riparian state in relation to the rivers of Punjab but the Central government of India has made extra-legal and extra-constitutional arrangements to allocate the river water of Punjab to Haryana, Rajasthan and Delhi. Due to forceful allocation of Punjab’s river water to these non-riparian state, Punjab is facing severe water crisis as state’s ground water table to depleting at an alarming rate and majority of blocks in Punjab as overexploited in terms of use of ground water.

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