New Delhi: The Supreme Court on Thursday declared that Punjab Termination of Agreements Act, 2004 scrapping so-called water-sharing agreements with neighbouring Haryana and other states is ultra vires (unconstitutional). The court also said that the Punjab government should start work to construct controversial Sutlej Yamuna canal as SCI 2004 decision.
HERE IS FULL JUDGEMENT OF SUPREME COURT OF INDIA ON SYL CANAL AND PTAA ISSUE:
NEW DELHI—In a major setback to Punjab, the Supreme Court of India today gave its verdict in favour of Haryana on Satluj-Yamuna Canal issue. Quashing the Punjab Termination of Agreement Act-2004 (passed by Punjab assembly in 2004), Constitution bench of Justice Anil R. Dave said that the Punjab state doesn’t possess the rights to pass just judgement on its own.
The court answered in negative all the questions raised before it through presidential reference under Article 143 of the Constitution, stating that the Punjab water Law is unconstitutional. Following the court order, the Centre will take over the canal and continue the construction work on it.
In a quick response to SC verdict, Head of Punjab Pradesh Congress Committee Captain Amarinder Singh resigned from MP post from Amritsar Sahib Constituency from where he was elected in May 2014. Also, all the Congress legislators of Punjab assembly have resigned in protest of the SC verdict against Punjab.
Captain Amarinder Singh has alleged that the Badal government did not make a strong case in court, which led to the Supreme Court order that is against the interests of Punjab.
Meanwhile, the Deputy Chief Minister of Punjab Sukhbir Badal has called an emergency meeting of Cabinet Ministers at Chandigarh to deliberate upon the future course of action. Interacting with media, Sukhbir Badal ensured that the Punjab government won’t let go even a single drop of water to Haryana. “We will announce our next step after thoroughly discussing the SC verdict,” he added.
Rubbishing the allegations leveled by PPCC head Captain Amarinder Singh, Sukhbir Badal termed the resignations tendered by Congress leaders as a drama. He said that the foundation laying ceremony of the SYL-Canal was carried out by Indira Gandhi and Punjab’s State Congress Chief Amarinder Singh had gone to receive her.
Co-Incharge of AAP affairs in Punjab MLA Jarnail Singh has said that the AAP was ready to make any sacrifice to defend the state interests.
Chief Minister of Haryana Manohar Lal Khattar has warmly welcomed the SC verdict. He termed it as a belated but an absolute correct decision.
It may be recalled here that a five-judge constitution bench headed by Justice AR Dave, who is leaving office on November 18, had reserved the verdict on 12 May after the Centre maintained its earlier stand of 2004, that the states concerned should settle their disputes on the matter by themselves. via Sikh 24 and sikhsiyasat.net