October 29, 2014 | By IP Singh, TOI
Jalandhar: Even as Punjab BJP is insisting on resolving the long-pending issue of Punjab in accordance with the Rajiv-Longowal accord, which includes transfer of Chandigarh to Punjab and looking into the blacklist of Sikhs, its alliance partner Shiromani Akali Dal now feels that the accord is no longer relevant.
“Much water has flown into the rivers of Punjab after this Accord in 1985 and it is as good as non-existent and does not hold any relevance to resolve the contentious issues,” said SAD secretary and spokesperson Daljit Singh Cheema while speaking to TOI on Sunday.
Notably, Punjab BJP President Kamal Sharma said at least twice in the last week that issues of Punjab should be resolved in the light of the Accord. He had also said that, as promised in the Accord, Chandigarh should be transferred to Punjab and other issues should also be tackled according to it. He had told the TOI on Saturday that Punjab BJP would take up the issue of “sympathetic and open-minded” review of the blacklist of Sikhs.
While BJP’s proactive approach on such issues is an entirely new phenomena and is being also seen as usurping of SAD’s agenda, Cheema said that they welcomed the BJP’s stance on these issues. He said that the SAD has always been raising it and in a recent meeting with Prime Minister Narendra Modi, Punjab chief minister Parkash Singh Badal had raised these issues in black and white.
“However, the Punjab Accord can’t solve these issues, especially concerning the river waters, as Punjab assembly unanimously passed the Punjab Termination of Agreements Act (PTAA), which scraped all agreements pertaining to river-water sharing while the accord, apart from working on river-water sharing also mandated completion of Satluj-Yamuna Link Canal. According to PTAA, the canal can’t be dug up,” Cheema argued.
“As the issue of PTAA is also pending before the Supreme Court, the Punjab Accord does not hold water now,” he emphasized.
Note: Above content was originally published at Times of India (TOI) under Title: “Rajiv-Longowal accord irrelevant: SAD” by IP Singh (on Oct. 27, 2014) at source page: http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/city/chandigarh/Rajiv-Longowal-accord-irrelevant-SAD/articleshow/44943532.cms . IT’s reproduced as above for the information of viewers/ readers of the Sikh Siyasat News (SSN).
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