Atishi invokes Mahatma Gandhi on second day of hunger strike : The Tribune India

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Atishi invokes Mahatma Gandhi on second day of hunger strike

Says won’t end satyagraha till Delhi receives its share of water

Atishi invokes Mahatma Gandhi on second day of hunger strike

Water Minister Atishi Singh during the second day of her fast in New Delhi on Saturday. TRIBUNE PHOTO



Tribune News Service

New Delhi, June 22

Water Minister Atishi continued her indefinite hunger strike for the second consecutive day, urging Haryana to provide Delhi its rightful share of water. Atishi’s protest, which she has termed “Pani satyagraha”, seeks to address the severe water shortage affecting 28 lakh residents of the Capital.

Her blood sugar level dipped by 16 units while her blood pressure also fell on Saturday.

Atishi explained that Delhi is supposed to receive 613 million gallons per day (MGD) of water from Haryana, but for the past several weeks, the supply has been reduced to 513 MGD. “One MGD water provides for 28,000 people. Shortage of 100 MGD water means 28 lakh people are not getting water in Delhi,” she stated. The shortage has been exacerbated, with Atishi noting, “Yesterday, Haryana gave 110 MGD less water to Delhi; due to less water, more than 2.8 million people of Delhi didn’t get water today.”

Emphasising her commitment, Atishi vowed, “This hunger strike will continue until people of Delhi get their rightful share of water from Haryana.” Her resolve is rooted in the principles of satyagraha, inspired by Mahatma Gandhi, as she seeks to secure justice and basic rights for Delhi’s citizens.

To further highlight the gravity of the situation and seek divine intervention, Atishi visited a shiv mandir in Bhogal. There, she offered water to Lord Shiva, praying for the wellbeing of Delhiites. “In this scorching heat, when Delhiites need more water, there is a shortage. Delhi does not have any of its own water. All the water that comes here is from neighbouring states,” Atishi explained.

The minister expressed frustration over Haryana’s non-compliance and her unsuccessful efforts to negotiate an adequate water supply. “I tried every possible way. But when the Haryana Government did not agree to give water in any way, I had no choice but to go on a hunger strike. The people of Delhi are in so much pain, and so much distress, that they are craving every drop of water,” she said.

Atishi added, “I will sit on this strike until the Haryana Government provides water to the people of Delhi.”

CPI general secretary D Raja extended support to Atishi at the venue. AAP leaders from Gujarat and Maharashtra also visited the satyagrah site. Raja said PM Narendra Modi should have ensured coordination between Delhi and Haryana over the issue of water but he did not do it. The CPI appeals to the Centre and the BJP government in Haryana to release Delhi’s share of water, he said.

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