Haryana finance and irrigation minister Captain Ajay Singh Yadav has urged President Pratibha Patil to intervene and resolve the controversy over the Satluj Yamuna Link (SYL).
In a letter written to Patil on Friday, the minister said, “Punjab has not constructed its portion of SYL depriving southern Haryana of its share of water from Ravi-Beas.” Yadav urged for early clearance of the Presidential Reference in the case.
He wrote, “Since July 22, 2004, the matter couldn't find regular hearing of the constitution bench and has remained pending.” Yadav added, “It is unprecedented in the history of India that the president's reference has failed to draw any attention for this long.”
The SYL controversy dates back to 1966 when Haryana was carved out of Punjab. After division, Haryana demanded its share of water from the SYL canal but Punjab refused to cooperate. The matter then went to court. The Punjab settlement was signed under which the state had to construct a portion of the SYL canal by August 15, 1986 but it failed to do so.
Later, the Centre was asked by the Supreme Court to build the Punjab canal with the help of Border Road Organisation. The issue, however, came to a standstill when the Punjab Termination of Agreements Act was passed in 2004. The President of India referred the matter to the apex court but no action has been taken yet.