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HindustanTimes Thu,21 Aug 2014

Yamuna campaign volunteers stay put at border, talks still on

HT Correspondent, Hindustan Times  New Delhi, March 13, 2013
First Published: 00:19 IST(13/3/2013) | Last Updated: 00:20 IST(13/3/2013)

Thousands of volunteers of the Yamuna Rakshak Dal-who are on a march to Parliament demanding a clean Yamuna - stayed put at Ali Gaon near Badarpur on Tuesday even as their leaders held talks with the government through the day.

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After a meeting of the leaders with Union Water Resources Minister Harish Rawat and Union Environment and Forests Minister Jayanthi Natarajan on Monday remained inconclusive, Tuesday saw another round of talks through the day.

Rawat and seniors ministers from both Delhi and Haryana represented the government side while Baba Jai Kishan Das, Pankaj Baba, Rakesh Yadav and Bhartiya Kisan Union leader Bhanu Prasad Singh represented the Yamuna volunteers.

"However, nothing concrete has come out as yet. The government has agreed to release more water but there is no decision on the quantum as yet," Rakesh Yadav, the spokesperson told HT.

Till that time, the volunteers have decided to stay put at the Ali Gaon camping site. "We will carry out bhajan kirtan … we do not want confrontation," he said.

Pankaj Baba had earlier clarified the demands of 'Save Yamuna' campaigners: "As much as 97% of the Yamuna water is impounded at Hathni Kund. Our demand is to release at least 50% of that water so that the River Yamuna has a natural flow right through Braj region up to Allahabad. We also demand a total ban on sewer or industrial effluents entering the river."

Thousands of men, women and children from Mathura had reached Delhi in tractors, trucks, trolleys and buses around noon on Monday and camped at Ali Gaon.


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