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The State Government of Haryana has informed the Delhi High Court on Tuesday that Court does not have the jurisdiction to adjudicate upon the Inter State Water Disputes between the State of Haryana and Delhi.

Further, it said Court does not have jurisdiction to hear allocation and supply of water to Delhi by State of Haryana and interpretation of the Inter-State agreements and implementation, which is barred under section 11 of the Inter State Water Disputes Act, 1956 read with Article 262 of the Constitution of India.

Haryana Government said that the Upper River Yamuna Board (URYB) should listen the dispute between the two states, in an affidavit filed before the bench led by the Chief Justice DN Patel and Justice C Hari Shankar. It further reads on that the Court has failed in its duty to decide the issue of jurisdiction before proceeding further in the matter.

The affidavit has been filed in the pending Public Interest Litigation filed by Advocate SB Tripathi alleging unequal/disproportionate distribution of water among the residents of Delhi and sought directions for sufficient water supply to Delhi.

The State of Haryana also contended before the Delhi High Court to reject the report presented by its constituted committee which had found large scale of mining on the River bed of Yamuna and said “the committee has gone beyond its mandate to escalate the issue”.

It is to be noted that Delhi High Court had set up a Committee on the application of Delhi Jal Board which had claimed that bunds have been built in cannals which is supplying the water to Delhi. The committee was constituted to conduct an inspection of areas following which it had submitted a report alleging illegal sand mining taking place.

The State Government of Haryana contended before the Delhi High Court that the report has been made by the committee without consulting them and the flow of water to Delhi has been excellent throughout the lean season which ended on 30 June. It further contended that the Delhi Government is using the PIL to solve the water dispute between the two states and the court has no jurisdiction to decide the issue. The State Government also objected to the DJB’s monitoring the flow of water and contended that Irrigation Department has a ‘gauze system’ in place to record the flow of water at various points in River Yamuna.

Delhi Jal Board has also filed its status report in the Delhi High Court outlining the revival plan for the River Yamuna and to keep the river free from illegal bunds and blockades.

The next date of hearing the matter is 27 July 2019.

-India Legal Bureau 

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