Himachal Pradesh's U-Turn On Surplus Water Leaves Parched Delhi High And Dry

The Supreme Court, in response, directed the Delhi government to pursue the matter with the Upper Yamuna River Board (UYRB) regarding water supply.
delhi water crisis

The Supreme Court has directed the Upper Yamuna River Board to seek a resolution to the issue.

New Delhi: Amid the escalating water crisis in the national capital, the Himachal Pradesh government has retracted its previous assertion, informing the Supreme Court on Thursday that it does not possess a surplus of 136 cusecs of water, contrary to its earlier statement.
The Supreme Court, in response, directed the Delhi government to pursue the matter with the Upper Yamuna River Board (UYRB) regarding water supply.
The counsel representing the Himachal Pradesh government informed the court that the 137 cusecs of water was actually "unutilised after irrigation and part of the natural course of river flow." "We may have failed to convey this accurately earlier. Our revised statement will be placed on record. Perhaps there was a mistake earlier, but I have been briefed. I will rectify and retract the previous statement regarding obstruction of flow," the counsel stated.
This prompted a stern warning from the court. "We have the authority to charge you with contempt and summon your Chief Secretary," it cautioned. In response, the Himachal government counsel apologised, promising to submit an affidavit and withdraw their earlier response.
The court has directed the Upper Yamuna River Board to seek a resolution to the issue. Previously, the board had insisted that Himachal Pradesh must demonstrate its release of 137 cusecs of unutilised water for Delhi following the Supreme Court's ruling on June 6th.
In an affidavit submitted to the court, the board referenced a letter sent by Himachal Pradesh to Haryana, indicating that the hill state's share of unutilised water was already flowing continuously to the Hathnikund barrage, and Haryana should release it to Delhi. "As per the aforementioned letter, the 137 cusecs of unutilised water are already flowing uninterrupted from the territory of Himachal Pradesh to Tajewala (in Haryana). Therefore, it appears that Himachal Pradesh is not releasing any additional water subsequent to the Supreme Court's order dated 06.06.2024, which could be measured by the Upper Yamuna River Board," the board stated.
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