SC Calls for Stakeholders Meet To Address Delhi's Demand for More Water amid Heatwave
Abhimanyu Hazarika (Bar  and  Bench) 03 June 2024
The Supreme Court on Monday ordered the Central government to hold a meeting of stakeholders to address the Delhi government's demand for supply of additional water from Himachal Pradesh through Haryana.
 
A Vacation Bench of Justices Prashant Kumar Mishra and KV Viswanathan passed the order after hearing the Delhi government's petition seeking directions to the State of Haryana to facilitate supply of water to the national capital from Himachal Pradesh.
 
"Why cannot there be a joint meeting of all the stakeholders?" the Court asked Solicitor General (SG) Tushar Mehta at the outset of the hearing.
 
SG Mehta submitted that the issue is already being considered by the Upper Yamuna River Board. However, he also pointed to the alleged wastage of water in the national capital.
 
"The Delhi government has to rein in leakages. Water loss is more than 52% because of tanker mafia and all my lords," he said.
 
Appearing for the Delhi government, Senior Advocate Abhishek Manu Singhvi submitted that there is an extreme heatwave in Delhi and that the water level at the Wazirabad plant must be maintained. 
 
At this stage, the Court again urged the Centre to hold a meeting of stakeholders. SG Mehta then said that the meeting would be held on June 5.
 
Meanwhile, counsel for Himachal Pradesh submitted that the State was ready to provide water to Delhi through its canal network.
 
The case will now be heard on June 6. 
 
The Delhi government asked for additional water during the ongoing heatwave as a stop-gap emergency measure.
 
The national capital is currently battling a heatwave with temperatures exceeding 50 degrees Celsius. This is bundled with an acute shortage of water, it was pointed out.
 
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