Haryana assembly passes resolution against Himachal Pradesh water cess proposal

The Haryana government has rejected the Himachal Pradesh government’s decision to introduce a bill to impose water cess on hydropower projects.

Himachal government is trying to collect revenue of Rs 1200 crore with the help of this tax. Out of this, Rs 336 crore will have to be borne by the Haryana government. The Haryana government on Wednesday passed a resolution against the imposition of the cess in the assembly.

Presently, Haryana gets total 1325 MW power from hydro plants of Himachal Pradesh. Out of this, 846 MW power is received through BBMB (Bhakra Beas Management Board), 64 MW through Nathpa Jhakri and 415 MW through NHPC.

After the cess is imposed, this electricity will cost Haryana dearly. Describing water cess as illegal and illegal, Chief Minister Manohar Lal said that Haryana is not bound to pay water cess. That’s why Himachal Pradesh government should withdraw it immediately.

Chief Minister Manohar Lal proposed a proposal in this regard in the House, which was also supported by the opposition and the proposal was passed unanimously in the House. The House has also urged the Central Government to order the Himachal Pradesh Government to withdraw this ordinance. Haryana argues that this decision of the Himachal government is against the Inter-State Water Disputes Act, 1956.

Violation of state’s special rights: CM

Chief Minister Manohar Lal said in the House that this water cess would put an additional financial burden of Rs 1,200 crore per year on the participating states. Out of this, the burden of about Rs 336 crore will fall on the state of Haryana. This cess is not only infringing on the exclusive rights of the state over natural resources, but will also lead to additional financial burden for power generation. This will also increase the cost of power generation.

No state alone can decide

Since the hydropower project is not a decision concerning one state alone. Due to the Indus Water Treaty of 1960, the central government has the right to intervene in this matter. Therefore, no state alone can decide in this context. The Haryana government has sought the intervention of the central government in this matter.

Resolution passed in the assembly

The Punjab government has also opposed the Himachal Pradesh government’s proposal to impose water cess. On Wednesday, the assembly condemned the decision of the Himachal Pradesh government under the leadership of Chief Minister Bhagwant Mann. Supporting the resolution moved by Punjab Water Resources Minister Gurmeet Singh Meet in the House, the Chief Minister said that it was a bigger betrayal than the interests of Punjab.

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