Chandigarh: Former Punjab Chief Minister Captain Amarinder Singh has said his government in 2004 had passed the state law terminating the Punjab’s water sharing pact with neighbouring states without consulting the Congress President Sonia Gandhi and had acutely upset her.
An upset Sonia Gandhi did not meet him for full six months after his government passed the law to annul the Sutlej-Yamuna Link (SYL) canal water sharing pact with neighbouring states in 2004, revealed Capt Singh yesterday during launch of his authorised biography ‘The People’s Maharaja.’
The Supreme Court last November had struck down the Punjab Termination of Agreements Act, 2004 as “unconstitutional,” making it clear that the state could not have taken a “unilateral” decision to abrogate the water sharing pact with Haryana, Himachal Pradesh, Rajasthan, Jammu and Kashmir, Delhi and Chandigarh.
Capt Singh said Sonia Gandhi had got upset with him because he, being the state CM of a Congress government, had not consulted the party high command over the sensitive issue.
“Mrs Gandhi wouldn’t see me. She didn’t see me for six months as the Chief Minister. The friends then told her either sack him (Amarinder) or see your CM. So, she eventually called me and, sitting across the table, asked me ‘why did you do this (passed the Termination Act)’. I said this was necessary for Punjab. Then she said why didn’t you ask me, to which I said had I asked you, would you have said yes. To this, she (Sonia) said no.. Then I told her I did it because it was in the interest of Punjab,” revealed Capt Singh.
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