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Modi says will stop water flow to Pakistan, give it to farmers instead (Roundup)

IANS  |  Bathinda (Punjab) 

Marking a toughening of stance, Prime Minister Modi on Friday said he was determined to stop the flow of river water "on which has its right" into and supply it instead to farmers in and

Directly taking on Islamabad on the issue of river water sharing and tension along the border, Modi said he is determined to tackle the issues.

"The water on which has its right is flowing into I am determined to stop that water and supply it to our farmers in Punjab, and the rest of India," he said at a public rally near Bathinda town after laying the foundation stone of an All Institute of Medical Sciences (AIIMS).

Expressing his surprise that the water-sharing issue had not been addressed by previous Indian governments, Modi said: "The governments in Delhi were sleeping in the past. Our farmers kept crying and the water kept going to We will fight for the rights of our farmers.

"The Indus water treaty, Sutlej, Beas, Ravi - the water of all three rivers, over which our farmers have their right, is not available to them. The water of these rivers is the right of and our farmers. This water is flowing through and into the sea. Neither uses it nor can our farmers use it.

"I am moving ahead with conviction on this and have set up a task force on Indus Water Treaty," he said.

Modi, while pointing out that he was standing close to the border with and wanted to address the people of Pakistan, said people in the neighbouring country should force their rulers to fight against poverty and corruption instead of fighting with

"Look at the strength of our Army. Our soldiers did a surgical strike in a 250-km belt. Army has seen what our Army can do. There was big turmoil (in Pakistan) and it is still not settled.

"Standing close to the border, I want to address people in

"If schoolchildren are killed in Pakistan, 125 crore Indians cry for them. I want to urge the people of to force their rulers that if they have to fight, they should fight against poverty, corruption and other evils," he said.

The Prime Minister said vested interests in were trying to keep "tension alive with India".

Referring to the campaign launched by his government against corruption and black money, Modi said: "I want to stop the exploitation of the middle class and get the poor their rights."

He said the public had faced problems and inconvenience following his decision to demonetise the 500 and 1,000 rupee notes, but had borne the trouble for the sake of honesty.

The Prime Minister urged people not to let the black money hoarders rise again. "Join us in this campaign to make this country great again," he added.

Later, Modi arrived in the Sikh holy town of Anandpur Sahib and offered prayers at Gurdwara Takht Sri Keshgarh Sahib.

Sporting a saffron headgear, Modi was presented a 'siropa' or robe of honour by the Sikh priests at the historic gurdwara, the second holiest of Sikh shrines after Amritsar's Golden Temple.

The 10th Sikh master, Guru Gobind Singh, founded the Khalsa Panth (religion of the pure) at Takht Keshgarh Sahib, 85 km from Chandigarh, in present day Ropar district of on April 13, 1699.

Modi urged people to follow the ideals of sacrifice and valour as shown by Guru Gobind Singh.

The Prime Minister later participated in a public function to mark the celebration of the 350th birth anniversary of Guru Gobind Singh.



(This story has not been edited by Business Standard staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)

First Published: Fri, November 25 2016. 19:52 IST