Haryana closed barrage gates releasing water to city, says Atishi; Cong., BJP corner AAP govt.

Delhi Minister says 28 lakh people hit due to water scarcity; Cong. accuses her of indulging in ‘political showmanship’; wrong to blame Haryana: BJP

Updated - June 25, 2024 11:41 am IST

Published - June 24, 2024 01:27 am IST

 Delhi Water Minister Atishi on Sunday alleged that the city is not getting its share of the Yamuna water as BJP-ruled Haryana has “closed” all gates of Hathnikund barrage from where water is released to the Capital.

The BJP junked the charge, accusing the Minister of evading her responsibility. Delhi Congress chief Devender Yadav also said Ms. Atishi was indulging in “political showmanship” and she should have instead taken effective steps to address the water crisis before sitting on the dharna.

The Delhi Congress chief, however, slammed the BJP, saying its seven Delhi Lok Sabha MPs should have taken up the matter with the Haryana government and the Centre if the neighbouring State is releasing less water to the Capital. “Instead of protesting on the streets, they should have worked to save people from their current misery,” he said.

Also read | Delhi water crisis: AAP’s Atishi hospitalised after health worsens during hunger strike

The barrage falls in Haryana’s Yamunanagar district and it is the starting point of the Western Yamuna canal network. The Munak canal, which supplies the river water to the Capital, is part of the network.

Ms. Atishi had started an indefinite fast on Friday over the issue in Delhi’s Bhogal. She has repeatedly accused Haryana of not releasing Delhi’s share of the Yamuna water into the Munak canal, a charge denied by the neighbouring State. 

The Minister told reporters that the barrage gates were found “closed” by many journalists who had gone to the spot on Saturday. “Haryana is releasing only 513 million gallons per day [MGD] of water, which is 100 MGD less. One MGD fulfils the water needs of 28,500 people, which means when Haryana is releasing 100 MGD less water, 28 lakh people of Delhi are getting hit,” she said.

“I request the Haryana government with folded hands to open the gates of the Hathnikund barrage,” she added.

Meanwhile, AAP said a team of doctors examined the Minister’s health and found a sharp drop in her sugar levels and body weight. “They have said it is dangerous for her health and advised her to stop her fast,” the party said in a statement.

‘People are dying’

Delhi BJP chief Virendra Sachdeva called Ms. Atishi’s indefinite fast a “drama” and said it is extremely shameful that people are dying in Delhi due to severe heatwave. “Instead of taking measures to prevent these deaths, the AAP government is engrossed in the drama of an air-conditioned satyagraha,” the BJP leader said.

He said the Haryana government and their officials have proven with evidence that they are supplying more water to Delhi than the stipulated amount.

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