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Amarinder, Sukhbir wage Twitter war SYL issue

Press Trust of India  |  Chandigarh 

Punjab Chief Minister Amarinder Singh and SAD chief Sukhbir Singh Badal on Saturday waged a Twitter war over the Sutlej Yamuna Link canal issue, with both projecting themselves as greater champion of the state's cause.

It all started when Shiromani Akali Dal president Badal, in the wake of a meeting on Punjab, Haryana and Central government officials on SYL issue in New Delhi on Friday, sought to warn the chief minister, on his Twitter handle, against "succumbing to any pressure" over the contentious issue.

This prompted Chief Minister Singh to take to his own Twitter handle to remind Badal that it was he who had abrogated the inter-state water sharing agreements in 2004 to protect Punjab's interest.

The officials of the Panjab, Haryana and the Central government had met in New Delhi on Friday in pursuance of a July order of the Supreme Court to the chief ministers of the two states to form a committee to resolve the SYL issue with the Centre's mediation.

There is no need for the Punjab govt to participate in any meeting on the Sutlej Yamuna Link (SYL) canal. I warn Pb CM@capt_amarinder not to succumb to any pressure & bargain away the river waters of Punjab. The SAD stand is clear: Pb doesn't hv even a single drop of water to spare, Sukhbir said in his tweet.

Responding to Badal's tweet, the chief minister tweeted, Ironic to see @officeofssbadal advising me on protecting Punjab's interests. It was I who brought in 'The Punjab Termination of Agreements Act, 2004', abrogating the inter-state agreement to protect Punjab. Let me not say more. Unlike you, Punjab is always first for me.

It prompted Badal to fire a salvo at Amarinder. He uploaded a newspaper advertisement of 1982 vintage on his Twitter handle.

The advertisement showed Singh welcoming erstwhile Prime Minister Indira Gandhi, visiting Punjab to lay the foundation stone for the SYL canal at Kapoori in Patiala.

The SAD chief captioned the advertisement as, This speaks volume @capt_amarinder.

The Punjab chief minister returned the fire, telling the SAD chief that he had no right to speak on SYL as his father and former Punjab chief Minister Parkash Singh Badal had issued the notification for acquiring land to build the SYL canal.

"Chaudhary Devi Lal (the then then Haryana chief minister) confirmed in the Haryana assembly in Mar 1978 that your father (Parkash Singh Badal) had issued the notification regarding the land acquisition for SYL & later accepted a cheque of ?1 crore. You have no right to speak on SYL. Leave it to me & I'll ensure Punjab's water stays in Punjab, Amarinder said in his tweet.

SYL has been a contentious issue between Punjab and Haryana.Punjab has been demanding reassessment of the Ravi-Beas river waters' volume while Haryana has been seeking completion of the SYL canal to get its share of 3.5 million acre feet of the river waters.

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

First Published: Sat, August 17 2019. 22:50 IST