After the release of Sidhu Moosewala’s song SYL, which garnered 17 million views within a hour, has now become the talk of the nation. He has used very bold writing in his song. SYL, written and sung by Moosewala, is the first song to be released after his death. The Sutlej-Yamuna Link (SYL) canal issue, Punjab's right over river waters, and Sikh prisoners languishing in jails are among the issues highlighted in the song. The canal is currently under construction and is 214 kilometers long. Now, after the release of this song, people are eager to know about the issue of SYL. Let’s shed light on the same.
The river waters
The canal, once completed, will enable the sharing of the waters of the rivers Ravi and Beas between the two states. The issue dates back to 1966, at the time of the reorganisation of Punjab and the formation of Haryana. Punjab was opposed to sharing the waters of the two rivers with Haryana, citing riparian principles.
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At a groundbreaking ceremony in Kapoori village in the Patiala district on April 8, 1982, then-prime minister Indira Gandhi officially began work on the SYL Canal. A 214-kilometre route was planned to be built, of which 122 km would travel through Punjab and 92 km via Haryana.
However, the Akalis started a protest against the canal's construction called the Kapoori Morcha. Then, in July 1985, the agreement for a new tribunal to judge the water was signed by Prime Minister Rajiv Gandhi and the leader of the Akali Dal at the time, Sant Harchand Singh Longowal.
On 24 July 1985, Longowal had signed the Punjab accord, also known as the Rajiv-Longowal Accord, along with Rajiv Gandhi. The government accepted most of the demands of Akali Dal, which in turn agreed to withdraw their agitation. Less than a month after signing the Punjab accord, Longowal was assassinated by the Sikh groups who felt let down by the accord and opposed it.
The Eradi Tribunal, headed by Supreme Court Judge V Balakrishna Eradi was set up to reassess the availability and sharing of water. In 1987, the tribunal recommended an increase in the shares of Punjab and Haryana to 5 MAF and 3.83 MAF, respectively.
Many regions of Punjab could become dry beyond 2029, according to a state government study. In order to fill the granaries of the Center with wheat and paddy worth Rs 70,000 crore annually, the state has already over-utilized its groundwater resources for irrigation. According to studies, 79 percent of the state's land is over-exploited for water. Out of 138 blocks, 109 are classified as "over-exploited," two are "critical," five are "semi-critical," and only 22 are classified as "safe." The government claims that sharing water with any other state in such a situation is impossible.
Not only this, the worst fears about the northern region of the country losing its groundwater have been confirmed. The National Aeronautics and Space Administration’s (NASA) satellite imagery made available to the Centre warns of the fast disappearing of subsoil water in Haryana, Punjab and Rajasthan.
Reports suggest that groundwater levels have been declining by an average of one meter every three years (one foot per year). More than 109 cubic km (26 cubic miles) of groundwater disappeared between 2002 and 2008 double the capacity of India's largest surface water reservoir, the Upper Wainganga, and triple that of Lake Mead, the largest man-made reservoir in the United States.
Why Did Project Came To A Halt?
On July 23, 1990, the meeting about the construction of the SYL Canal was held in Sector 26, Chandigarh. During that time, Balwinder Singh Jattana, along with Balbir Singh Fauji, Jagtar Singh Panjola, and Harmeet Singh Bhaowal, reached the head office of the SYL project is in Chandigarh Sector 26.
It was reported that Balwinder, along with his acquaintances, entered the building and assassinated M.S. Sikri and Avtar Aulakh, the chief engineer of the SYL project. And then, after their assassination, the project SYL was pulled off. In the backdrop of the incident, Captain Amarinder Singh has been cautioning the Centre not to rake up the issue again.
Hindi : आखिर क्या है SYL? जिसकी वजह से Sidhu Moosewala के गाने पर हो रहा बवाल