Sukhbir asks Kejriwal not to play politics on SYL canal

Shiromani Akali Dal (SAD) president Sukhbir Badal on Wednesday asked Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) convenor Arvind Kejriwal not to play politics on the sensitive issue of the Satluj Yamuna Link (SYL) canal even as he asked Punjab Chief Minister Bhagwant Mann to urge him to withdraw the guarantee given on this issue to the people of Haryana.

Talking to the media at Gurdwara Rakabganj here, Badal said the AAP had again started befooling Punjabis in its age-old tradition. The Punjab Finance Minister had now announced that the state’s river waters would not flow into Haryana, even as a Rajya Sabha Member of Parliament had given a guarantee on behalf of Kejriwal in Haryana that water from the SYL canal would irrigate each and every field in the state.

Asserting that this insidious conduct of AAP had the potential to inflame sentiments in the entire region, Badal said the continued silence of Mann on this issue was being read as a weakness by Punjabis.

“It seems Mann knows the real intentions of Kejriwal which the latter has made public earlier also by filing an affidavit in the Supreme Court demanding water be released to Haryana and Delhi through the SYL. If Mann does not step in and ask Kejriwal to withdraw the guarantee given by his party to the people of Haryana, he should be prepared to face the angst of Punjabis who will not allow one drop of water to flow into Haryana from the SYL canal.”

Badal said as far as SAD was concerned, the issue of the SYL had been closed forever in 2016 when then Chief Minister Parkash Singh Badal denotified all land acquired to build the canal and handed it back to farmers.

“Now there is no land available for construction of the canal. Thinking of taking water from the canal to Haryana amounts to day dreaming,” he added.

Answering a query, Badal condemned the manner in which Punjab Police was being misused to victimise the political opponents of AAP.

“Bhagwant Mann should not allow misuse of Punjab Police on the directions of the Delhi Chief Minister. We are witnessing cases being registered against all those who have stood up to AAP and the latest victim is Kumar Vishwas. Punjabis did not give power to AAP to enable it to settle its political scores. The mandate was to provide transparent, persecution free governance as well as fulfill all the promises made to the people.

“The AAP government should concentrate on this rather than registering false cases against its opponent and sending Punjab Police personnel to their doorsteps to harass and persecute them,” he added.




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