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Peak India Moment: Police use water cannons on protesters demonstrating against Delhi’s water shortage

Image Source: hindustantimes.com

On Saturday, June 22, Delhi Police deployed water cannons to disperse Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) activists protesting against the Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) government over a severe water shortage in the city, an action laden with irony given the nature of the protest.

Delhi Water Minister Atishi began an indefinite hunger strike on Friday in Bhogal, south Delhi, demanding additional water supply from Haryana. She claimed that Haryana had reduced Delhi’s water supply by 100 million gallons daily over the past two weeks, affecting approximately 2.8 million residents.

Delhi relies on neighboring states Uttar Pradesh and Haryana for its drinking water.

At the protest site, Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal’s wife, Sunita Kejriwal, along with other AAP leaders, read a message from the chief minister—currently detained in Tihar Jail—expressing hope that Atishi’s efforts would be successful.

Kejriwal shared his distress over the water scarcity affecting residents amid severe heatwaves, as seen on television.

BJP leader Ramesh Bidhuri led the demonstration at the Jal Board’s Okhla filling pump, where police intervened with water cannons, reported PTI.

Social media users quickly pointed out the paradox. One commenter noted, “Delhi police is using water cannons on people protesting against the water shortage in Delhi.” Another suggested, “Instead, the water could have been given to the protesters. They might have thanked the police for the water.”

“Only in India! Use a water cannon to quell a protest against a water crisis,” commented another user.

Additionally, Delhi’s Lieutenant Governor VK Saxena criticized the AAP government for the ongoing water crisis, accusing them of exploiting the situation for political gain and exacerbating tensions with neighboring states also facing water shortages.

Saxena remarked that the inflammatory rhetoric from Delhi’s ministers has been both distressing and questionable, turning a severe crisis into a political standoff.

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