Summer approaching, ask Haryana to release water: Sheila to Centre

Parched Haryana hasn't supplied additional 80 mgd, as agreed after Munak Canal construction.

With summer approaching, and with it the shortage of water supply in the national capital, Chief Minister Sheila Dikshit has written to the Ministry of Water Resources, demanding that Haryana release water to Delhi. Sent 10 days ago, the letter requests the Union Ministry to intervene and direct the Haryana government to release the quantum of water agreed upon.

With several such letters to the Centre, including one to Prime Minister Manmohan Singh, in the past proving futile, Dikshit asserted that the government would now concentrate on conserving and recycling water.

"I have written to the Centre so often with the same request, but to little avail. As per our agreements, Haryana is supposed to supply an additional 80 million gallons of water daily (mgd), which they have thus far flatly refused," Dikshit said. Last year, she said, she had even taken up the issue with the PM.

According to Dikshit, the water situation in Delhi is stable, but could decline. "The summer is approaching and Delhi's population increases by about five lakh every year, so the demand for water obviously will rise. With no real resolution to the dispute, we have decided to concentrate on conserving and recycling water instead," she said.

The dispute between the two states revolves around the newly built Munak Canal a 102-km lined canal built to save water lost en route from Haryana through leakages. The Rs 414-crore canal, which runs through both states, was built by Haryana but entirely funded by Delhi.

"We were to get an additional 80 mgd of water once the canal was completed. However, the Haryana government maintains that the 80 mgd is part of what Delhi receives," Dikshit said.

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