'Kejriwal has done PhD in speaking lies': Anil Vij hits out at AAP over water sharing row
The senior Haryana minister admitted that there is a water shortage due to delayed monsoon, but asserted that inspite of this, Haryana is giving Delhi its due share.
CHANDIGARH: Haryana Minister Anil Vij on Monday dismissed as baseless the Delhi government's charge that his state was withholding the national capital's share of 120 million gallons of water a day and alleged that Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal had "done a Ph.D in speaking lies".
Delhi Jal Board (DJB) vice chairman Raghav Chadha on Sunday had said that the water utility has moved the Supreme Court, seeking directions to Haryana to release the capital's legitimate share of water.
He claimed that Haryana has been withholding 120 million gallons of water a day (MGD) meant for Delhi and that the raw water being discharged into the Yamuna river by the neighbouring state is at an "all-time low".
When asked about the Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) government's claims, Haryana Home Minister Vij told reporters that "Kejriwal (the Delhi chief minister) has done a Ph.D in speaking lies".
"First, they the (AAP government) presented false figures during Covid second wave to procure oxygen, much above the requirement, and now Kejriwal is doing the same on the water issue to hide his own failures. They are levelling baseless allegations," he said.
Haryana is continuously providing 1,049 cusecs of water at Munak through its canal system to Delhi, Vij said and accused the AAP dispensation of making baseless allegations against Haryana "by misleading the people of Delhi to cover up their own mismanagement".
He admitted that there is a water shortage due to delayed monsoon, but asserted that inspite of this, Haryana is giving Delhi its due share.
"Even if there is water shortage, Haryana is taking the brunt, but giving Delhi its full share," Vij said.
The Haryana government had said on Sunday that there is less water in the Yamuna river due to delay in the arrival of monsoon and the AAP dispensation's mismanagement has led to water shortage in the national capital.
Following DJB vice-chairman Chadha's charge, the Haryana government, in a statement, also accused the AAP of indulging in a "false political rhetoric to hide its failure".
In response to a question on an incident on Sunday in which protesting farmers allegedly attacked Haryana Assembly Deputy Speaker Ranbir Gangwa's car in Sirsa, Vij said if anyone commits violence under the guise of agitation, action according to the aw will be taken against the offender.
He said that everyone has the right to hold a protest in a peaceful manner, conduct processions and hold hunger strikes, but no one has a right to indulge in any kind of violent act.
Regarding the Sirsa incident, Vij said that instructions have been given to the inspector general of police of Hisar range to collect information in this matter.
Further action will be taken after complete information is received, he said.
To a query on arrangements being made in case there is a third wave of Covid, Vij, who also holds the health portfolio, said that the state government is alert and has made full preparations.
"In addition, we have learned from the gaps of the first and second wave of Covid and made arrangements for a possible third wave accordingly," he said.
There was shortage of oxygen during the second wave of Covid, but later instructions to set up oxygen plants in all civil hospitals of the state was issued so that the possible third wave can be dealt with efficiently, Vij said.
Similarly, he said that deputy commissioners have been instructed to visit hospitals and check functioning of oxygen beds, ICU beds and ventilators and to take necessary measures if there is any shortage or if any equipment is not found fully functional.