Millennium Post

Experts divided over implementation of SC verdict

Experts divided over implementation of SC verdict
It took around 12 years for the presidential reference on the SYL canal case to be decided by the Supreme Court, but uncertainty over implementation of the verdict continues as experts are divided over the feasibility of its execution.

While those supporting the verdict are of the opinion that there is no other option but to construct the remaining part of the canal on the Punjab side, others are of the view that change in circumstances in the last 5-6 decades have posed hurdles in the enforcement of the verdict.

“The verdict of the Supreme Court is the opinion on question of law. The advisory opinion is also a declaration of law. In the SYL case, the declaration of the law is that the Punjab Termination of Agreement Act, 2004 was not valid.

“There is no option for the President to accept or not to accept. His job is over,” senior advocate Govind Goel said.

Holding a contrary view, senior advocate R S Suri, who represented Punjab, said the state cannot be left “remedy- less” in the water pact as there is a deficiency in quantity which used to be there when the SYL canal pact was signed.

“The most important thing for Punjab is the constitution of the tribunal to settle the dispute. Punjab cannot be left remedy-less as all the agreement on water sharing are of 1940s and 1960s and already there is 20 per cent less water available.

“The question that is required to be addressed is water has to be re-allocated. Since all the treaties and agreement were of 40s and 60s, there is a need for new series of treaties,” he said.

Echoing a similar view, senior advocate and Rajya Sabha MP K T S Tulsi said, “The problem is that if you force the agreement, virtually whole of Punjab will turn into a desert.

Almost 113 out of total 140 tehsils are already water- stressed. Most of them are dependent on ground water.” 

He also said the verdict of the five-judge bench on the issue was not binding on the Centre as it was delivered under advisory jurisdiction.

Another lawyer, who appeared for one of the states and did not wish to be named, endorsed Goel’s view and said, “Haryana has to enforce the decree. The Centre, which has the executive power, can intervene and complete pending works.” 

Badal asks Cong MLAs to attend spl assembly session

Punjab Chief Minister Parkash Singh Badal on Sunday said Congress MLAs must attend the special session of state assembly for chalking out a concrete strategy to protect waters of the state, asserting that Sutlej Yamuna Link (SYL) canal is not a political issue but a matter involving the lifeline of Punjab.

Punjab government has convened a special session on November 16 following the Supreme Court verdict on the water issues. After the verdict, all 42 Congress MLAs have tendered their resignations from the state assembly.

Interacting with media persons on the sidelines of a function to mark 20th death anniversary of Subedar Bapu Kartar Singh, father of Cabinet Minister Surjit Singh Rakhra, here, the Chief Minister said that in larger interests of the state, the Congress MLAs must ensure their presence in the special session.

Badal said it was the need of the hour so that the message was conveyed to the entire country that whole Punjab was united on this emotive issue.

He said this was fight of every Punjabi and a united house must resolve to protect the waters of state at any cost.

Replying to another query, the Chief Minister said that neither NDA government nor Prime Minister Narendra Modi has any role in this matter as the ball is now in the court of President, to whom the Apex court has given advice on SYL issue.

He said that they would soon meet the President and apprise him about the depleting water level in the state.

Badal said that “we are duty-bound to protect waters of state and every option will be explored to save it”.

On queries pertaining to protests by Congress and Aam Aadmi Party, he said that both these parties are indulging in political gimmickry on this issue for their vested political interests.

He said Congress was the perpetrator of this sin against the state and its people.

Badal said that AAP government in Delhi had submitted affidavit against the state in Supreme Court on this issue.

“But now both of them are trying to mislead people through such tantrums”, he added.

He assailed the opposition parties for allegedly misleading the people on this sensitive issue.

Pass resolution in Assembly to challenge SYL verdict: AISSF to CM

The All India Sikh Student Federation (AISSF), a radical outfit, has appealed to Punjab Chief Minister Parkash Singh Badal to pass a resolution in the Assembly to challenge the Supreme Court decision on Sutlej Yamuna Link (SYL) canal.

In a letter to Badal, the outfit’s president Karnail Singh Peer Mohammad said that “with the November 10 decision of the Supreme Court on SYL canal, the people of Punjab have exhausted all legal remedies available...to secure their Riparian rights over the water resources of their homeland”.

Terming the Supreme Court’s decision on SYL canal as “blatant contravention of international laws and denial of riparian rights” of Punjab, he demanded that the Assembly pass a resolution to challenge the verdict before the International Court of Justice in the Hague.

The Punjab government has convened a special session of the Assembly on November 16 following the Supreme Court verdict on the water-sharing issue.

Punjab will not spare even one drop of water: Captain

Punjab Chief Minister Parkash Singh Badal on Sunday said Congress MLAs must attend the special session of state assembly for chalking out a concrete strategy to protect waters of the state, asserting that Sutlej Yamuna Link (SYL) canal is not a political issue but a matter involving the lifeline of Punjab.

Punjab government has convened a special session on November 16 following the Supreme Court verdict on the water issues. After the verdict, all 42 Congress MLAs have tendered their resignations from the state assembly.

Interacting with media persons on the sidelines of a function to mark 20th death anniversary of Subedar Bapu Kartar Singh, father of Cabinet Minister Surjit Singh Rakhra, here, the Chief Minister said that in larger interests of the state, the Congress MLAs must ensure their presence in the special session.

Badal said it was the need of the hour so that the message was conveyed to the entire country that whole Punjab was united on this emotive issue.
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