‘Haryana usurping Yamuna water’

Chief Minister Vasundhara Raje has accused the Haryana Government of “usurping Rajasthan’s share of water” from the Yamuna and has urged the Centre to intervene in the matter.

In a letter written to the Union Water Resources Minister Ghulam Nabi Azad, Ms. Raje has said that Haryana was usurping Rajasthan’s share of water at both Tajewala and Okhla head works on the Yamuna.

Even after 20 years of the water agreement, Rajasthan was being deprived of its legitimate share of the Yamuna water. Citing data from the Upper Yamuna River Board (UYRB), Ms. Raje said Rajasthan’s share in the Yamuna water was around 9 percent, while only 1 percent of water was being made available even after 20 years of the water-sharing agreement. On the other hand, Haryana was utilising up to 69 per cent, while its actual allocation was only around 48 per cent, she pointed out.

In a UYRB meeting on 21st December, 2001, Rajasthan was allocated 1917 and 1281 cusec water from the Tajewala Okhla head works respectively.

An empowered committee set up by the Upper Yamuna Review Committee, in its report submitted to the Union Ministry of Water Resources in 2007, reiterated that Rajasthan’s share was rightful.

The water is expected to benefit areas in and around Churu and Jhunjhunu districts.

In her letter, Ms. Raje claimed Haryana did not accept the idea of remodelling of the Western Yamuna Canal but instead proposed Rajasthan could carry its share through a new parallel canal by constructing a barrage at Mawi near Panipat. She further argued that despite repeated requests, the Haryana Government did not discuss findings of the Empowered Committee report, which made it evident that release of water from Tajewala was being delayed by Haryana.

As for Okhla, only 50 per cent of water released from there was reaching the Rajasthan border, she said. She requested Mr. Azad to issue instructions to Haryana to release Rajasthan’s allotted share of the Yamuna water and for joint gauging by both States near the entry point at the Rajasthan-Haryana border.

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