Haryana: BJP leaders, activists observe fast over SYL canal issue

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Chandigarh, Dec 19 (PTI) Amid ongoing protests by farmers against the central agriculture laws, Haryana BJP leaders and activists observed a daylong fast seeking the construction of the contentious Sutlej-Yamuna link canal.

However, the BJP leaders faced protests in Fatehabad and Karnal against the farm laws.

Farmers carrying black flags pushed through police barricades near Fatehabad's Papiha Park and raised slogans against party leaders.

The BJP leaders and workers then shifted their fast venue under tight security, police said.

In Karnal, a group of farmers protested near the venue where BJP leaders were observing the fast.

Haryana BJP chief O P Dhankar condemned the incident and said some “unruly persons” had indulged in the activity, which is reprehensible.

State Agriculture Minister J P Dalal in Bhiwani said farmers of Haryana are demanding the construction of the Sutlej-Yamuna link (SYL) canal and the state should get its share of river waters from Punjab.

In Rohtak, BJP MP Arvind Sharma said the intention of the daylong fast was to press Punjab Chief Minister Amarinder Singh to give Haryana's share of river waters.

On the timing of the fast, Sharma said 2.50 crore people of Haryana are demanding the construction of the canal.

“After I became an MP, I raised this issue in Parliament. Punjab should look at the demand of people of Haryana,” said Sharma.

Meanwhile, Congress MLA and former Haryana minister Kiran Chaudhary accused the BJP of misleading farmers over the SYL canal issue.

She charged the state BJP leaders with observing a “fake” fast to “divert attention” from the Centre's farm laws. “Farmers will continue to fight for their rights,” she said.

The Sutlej Yamuna Link (SYL) canal has been a contentious issue between Punjab and Haryana.

Punjab has been demanding reassessment of the Ravi-Beas river waters volume while Haryana has been seeking completion of the canal to get its share of 3.5 million acre feet of water. PTI CHS VSD RDK RDK