Hooda says Badals' SAD indulging in SYL 'vote bank politics'

| Updated: Aug 23, 2017 11:20 IST

Chandigarh [India], Nov. 17 (ANI): Former Haryana chief minister Bhupinder Singh Hooda on Thursday said the Punjab Government and especially the Shiromani Akali Dal are indulging in vote bank politics over Sutlej-Yamuna Link (SYL) canal issue. Singh told ANI, "Day before yesterday we all decided to have an all party meeting, because at the moment this matter is not about a single party but about the state. The issue is above any political party. So, everybody should get together and keep aside the politics that is why we have called for an all party meeting." "The way the Punjab Government, especially the Akali Dal, is behaving, it is all about vote bank politics. They are talking as if Punjab is some other country," he added. Singh further said, "I requested earlier as well for a special assembly session, so that the ministers of Haryana can talk about the demands of Haryana and can decide in the welfare of the state." Earlier today, Haryana Chief Minister M.L. Khattar called for an all-party meeting to discuss the Sutlej Yamuna link canal issue. They will hold the meeting at the Haryana Niwas in Chandigarh as announced by the state government on Tuesday. The decision came barely two hours before the Punjab government decided to return the 5,376 acres of land acquired for the canal more than three decades ago to its original owners.' The Supreme Court on Tuesday said it would hear the Satluj-Yamuna Link (SYL) canal issue in due course of time. Hearing a petition filed by a lawyer on behalf of a non-governmental organisation (NGO) for criminal contempt of court against Punjab Chief Minister Parkash Singh Badal and his son and Deputy CM Sukhbir Singh Badal , a bench headed by Chief Justice Tirath Singh Thakur decided to take up the SYL matter in due course of time. However, the court has not fixed a date for the hearing as of now. According to the petitioner, both father and son are saying on record that they will not follow the apex court order on the SYL canal issue. The apex court had on Thursday termed the law passed by Punjab in 2004 to terminate the SYL canal water sharing agreement with neighbouring states "unconstitutional". Holding that the Punjab Termination of Agreement Act, 2004, was not in conformity with the provisions of the constitution, the court answered in the negative all the four questions referred to it in a presidential reference. A constitution bench of the court ruled that Punjab could not have taken a "unilateral" decision to terminate the agreement with Haryana, Himachal Pradesh, Rajasthan, Jammu and Kashmir, Delhi and Chandigarh to share of the Ravi-Beas river waters. (ANI)