PCC chief Amarinder Singh has demanded deployment of the armed forces to prevent any untoward incident on Thursday, when INLD plans to force its way into Punjab to dig the Sutlej Yamuna Link (SYL) canal.
Expressing concern over reports of digging of holes by suspected INLD workers in Ambala, from where the party plans to move into Punjab, Amarinder alleged the Haryana government was not serious about nipping the threat in the bud.
“Only the deployment of armed forces, with preventive action against the INLD’s leadership, could foil any attempt to violate Punjab’s borders,” he added.
Earlier, the Punjab government has deployed forces at Kapoori and Shambu border in Patiala district, about 30 km from Chandigarh, in the wake of INLD’s move.
The Punjab government had also sought 20 companies of Paramilitary Forces from the Centre.
Notably, Haryana’s main opposition Indian National Lok Dal’s senior leader Abhay Chautala had announced that party activists will assemble at Ambala (Haryana) on February 23 and march towards Punjab for the purpose of digging the SYL canal after the recent Apex court verdict favouring Haryana in terms of sharing of river waters.
Amarinder also demanded preventive arrest of INLD leader Abhay and cancellation of party supremo Om Prakash Chautala’s parole to control the situation, “which have escalated to dangerous proportions”.
“Abhay’s adamant stand on the issue, and his defiant threat to go ahead with the SYL incursion even if the Army is called in, is ground enough for his preventive detention,” the former Punjab Chief Minister said in a statement here.
He said the central government should immediately step in to order large-scale deployment of the armed forces ahead of the threatened move by the INLD.
“Abhay Chautala’s defiant and provocative statements on the issue could have a long-term, explosive impact on Punjab’s peace,” Amarinder warned.
“Being a sensitive border state, Punjab could not be left to its own devices to handle the current volatile situation, particularly in the light of the fact that the state was in post-poll limbo, still awaiting the outcome of the assembly elections with no government worth the name at the helm to protect its interests,” said the Punjab Pradesh Congress Committee (PPCC) president.