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SC directs HP to release surplus water, asks Haryana to facilitate flow to Delhi

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New Delhi, June 6: The Supreme Court on Thursday directed the Himachal Pradesh government to release 137 cusecs of surplus water available with it for Delhi, which is grappling with water crisis.
A vacation bench of Justices P K Mishra and K V Viswanathan noted that the Himachal Pradesh government has no objection and is willing to release the surplus water available with it.
The bench directed the Haryana government to facilitate the flow of surplus water released by Himachal Pradesh so that it reaches the national capital.
The apex court made it clear that there should be no wastage of water by the Delhi government.
It said the 137 cusecs of surplus water be released by Himachal Pradesh on June 7 with prior intimation to Haryana.
During the hearing, the bench observed that there should be no politics on water and posted the matter for further hearing on June 10.
The apex court was hearing a plea filed by the Delhi government seeking a direction to Haryana to release the surplus water provided by Himachal Pradesh to the national capital to mitigate its ongoing water crisis.
The plea has made the Centre, the BJP-governed Haryana and the Congress-ruled Himachal Pradesh parties to the petition, saying access to water is essential for survival and is one of the basic human rights.
It has sought a direction to the Haryana government for immediate and continuous release of water at the Wazirabad barrage, including but not limited to the full surplus water provided by Himachal Pradesh for the National Capital Territory (NCT) of Delhi.
A victory for people, says Delhi water minister
Delhi Water Minister Atishi on Thursday welcomed the Supreme Court order directing Himachal Pradesh to release surplus water to the national capital, terming it a “victory” for the people of the city.
In a post on X, Atishi said, “I salute the Hon’ble Supreme Court for standing with the people of Delhi during this unprecedented water crisis. This is a time that calls for coordinated effort above all else, and the SC order marks a victory for the people of Delhi and their right to water.” The national capital has been grappling with a water crisis with the Delhi government accusing Haryana of not releasing its share of water.
Urban Development Minister Saurabh Bharadwaj alleged Haryana was providing less water to Delhi.
“So, we talked to the Himachal Pradesh government. I spoke to Chief Minister Sukhvinder Singh Sukhu and he was ready to provide water to Delhi. However, the Haryana government was not providing a path for the water, which forced the Delhi government to go to the Supreme Court,” Bharadwaj said.
“.if Himachal Pradesh is willing to provide water and Delhi is willing to take it, why is Haryana blocking the route? We thank the HP government and the apex court,” he added. (PTI)

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