Asserting that the Sutlej Yamuna Link (SYL) canal would "never become a reality", Punjab Chief Minister Parkash Singh Badal today said any move to share the river waters of the state would be "disastrous". Addressing a function on the dedication of temple-cum- panorama complex at Bhagwan Valmiki Tirath Sthal (Ram Tirath) here today, the Chief Minister asserted that Punjab didn't have a single drop of water to spare for anyone. "Any move to share the river waters of the state would be disastrous as it would lead to its desertification," he said. "Not only me, but every Punjabi is duty bound to oppose this move and all of us should take a pledge at this sacred place to protect the river waters of the state at any cost" said Badal. The Chief Minister said the state government on its part has already de-notified the land acquired for this canal and returned to the original owners and their lineal descendents. The Supreme Court yesterday had appointed receivers in the ongoing Sutlej-Yamuna Link (SYL) canal dispute between Punjab and Haryana and sought a report from them by December 15 on the present status of land and other properties on the canal site. A bench comprising justices P C Ghose and Amitava Roy, however, made clear that Union Home Secretary, Chief Secretary of Punjab and the Director General of Punjab Police, who had been made receivers, would not be taking over of the possession of the land meant for the SYL canal project. On the historical 200 crore monument-cum-temple complex at the Valmiki Ashram (Ram Tirath), the Chief Minister said it was a tribute by the state government to Bhagwan Valmiki, who had preached the message of equality and universal brotherhood. Earlier in his address, the Deputy Chief Minister, Sukhbir Singh Badal termed the occasion as the one holding special significance in the history of the state. The Deputy Chief Minister said those families in the state that have still not got gas connections can get these by filling forms in the offices of the DC and SDM offices of their respective districts. He said that more than 7 lakh people would get these connections in 10 days. He also said that under the SC scholarship Rs 400 crore are being given for the welfare of SC students. Sukhbir announced that in next 5 years, jobs to 10 lakh youth would be provided.
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