Punjab Water Resources Minister Sukhbinder Singh Sarkaria on Friday lashed out at Sukhbir Singh Badal for his misleading and distorted statement regarding the supply of canal water to the farmers and presented a true picture of the situation.Terming the statement of Sukhbir Badal as a trick to gain political mileage in which the latter claimed that if power and water supply is not restored in the next 2 days then the paddy crop would get destroyed, Sarkaria said that Badal is lying about the supply of canal water and misleading farmers.
The Water Resources Minister said that there is no shortage of canal water anywhere in Punjab and no complaint has been lodged by any farmer in this regard till now.He said that Punjab receives canal water from Bhakra Dam, Pong Dam and Ranjit Sagar Dam. However, due to deficit rainfall and snowfall this year, the water level in Bhakra Dam, Pong Dam and Ranjit Sagar Dam has reached 56.24 feet, 55.84 feet and 10.10 meters, which is lower than last year respectively. On the contrary, the demand for canal water has increased significantly due to less rainfall, he added.
He said that in spite of the above-mentioned levels in the dams, the water in the canals is being discharged at full capacity like every year like Sirhind canal system supplying water to Malwa region at its capacity of 11000 cusecs and Ferozepur canal system at about 10000 cusecs capacity.
Similarly, the Bist-Doab canal which supplies canal water to the Doaba region is running at a capacity of 1450 cusecs, the Shah Canal system at about 600 cusecs and Upper Bari Doab canal system is supplying water to the Majha region at a capacity of about 6000 cusecs.
Water Resources Minister said that wherever the canals can not carry water as per their capacity due to poor condition, rotation system is being implemented like every year. Apart from this, almost all the water is being supplied at the tail-end areas and the officials of the Water Resources Department are also monitoring it on a daily basis so that the farmers do not face any problem.
He said that the power crisis would be over soon as Chief Minister Capt Amarinder Singh has already issued instructions in this regard.He said that it was totally wrong to say that the paddy crop has been destroyed due to the non-availability of canal water as Sukhbir alleged.Sarkaria said that the decisions of the present government are more pro-farmer as compared to the previous government.