Now,bilateral talks between JK, Punjab to ‘resolve issues’
Govt Seeks Compensation, Rehabilitation Of Affected People At Delhi Meeting
RANJIT SAGAR DAM ROW
SHABIR IBN YUSUF
Srinagar, July 20: Jammu and Kashmir and Punjab Governments Friday agreed to hold bilateral talks to resolve issues related to Ranjit Sagar Dam.
The decision was taken at a high-level meeting convened in New Delhi which was facilitated by Secretary, Union Water Resource Ministry.
A delegation of J&K was represented by Chief Secretary Madhav Lal while the Punjab delegation too was represented by its Chief Secretary.
Besides Lal, Commissioner Secretary Irrigation, Public Health Engineering, BD Sharma was present during the meeting. “We held the meeting in a cordial atmosphere and put forth our demands and sought immediate redress of the issues,” Sharma told Greater Kashmir over phone from New Delhi.
Sharma said that they put forth the demand of 20 percent power from Dam resources. “Besides, we also asked for compensation and rehabilitation of the affected people,” he said.
“After deliberations for some time, it was decided that both the states will hold bilateral talks to resolve all the issues pertaining to Ranjit Sagar Dam,” Sharma said, adding, “The dates for bilateral meetings would be decided soon.”
The Dam site consists of 22 villages in Jammu region including the villages that give the barrage its name. An agreement between Punjab and J&K on January 20, 1979 was signed by the then Punjab Chief Minister Surjeet Singh Barnala and Sheikh Muhammad Abdullah for the construction of the dam—the agreement which many think lacked technical inputs from J&K side.
J&K was taken as a partner and asked to invest in the canal network that had the capacity to take 0.69 MAF. The agreement gave J&K rights over 20 percent of generations and 15 percent stakes in all kinds of jobs that the project would generate. The affected population was to be compensated and rehabilitated by Punjab and the areas inundated or the roads damaged were to be aligned by it.
Recently, on the water dispute of Jammu and Kashmir with Punjab pertaining to Ranjit Sagar dam, Union Home Minister P Chidambaram during a function in Chandigarh had said that J&K was not the only State which has water dispute with Punjab but there were disputes between Haryana and Punjab, Haryana and Rajasthan, Tamil Nadu and Karnataka. He added that the Central Government would call a separate meeting of the State on water issues.
Lastupdate on : Fri, 20 Jul 2012 21:30:00 Makkah time
Lastupdate on : Fri, 20 Jul 2012 18:30:00 GMT
Lastupdate on : Sat, 21 Jul 2012 00:00:00 IST
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