Chennai, Oct 28 (BPNS)
Tamil Nadu government which is managing the Mullaperiyar dam located geographically in Idukki district of Kerala will open the spillways of the dam on Friday morning at 7 am. The Tamil Nadu water resources department has already communicated the same to Kerala government on Wednesday night as the evacuation in Kerala’s Idukki district is required.
Kerala state water resources minister, Roshy Augustine had earlier requested the Tamil Nadu government to inform the state well in advance on the opening of the spillways of the dam so that the evacuation process is smooth on the Kerala side.
The spillways of the dam are to be opened following incessant rains in the catchment areas of Mullaperiyar and the water level in the dam has crossed 137.80 ft at 9 pm on Wednesday. The maximum water level in the dam set up by the Central Water Commission (CWC) is 138 ft and the water level is all set to cross this rule curve by Thursday morning.
Tamil Nadu has been drawing 2300 cusecs of water from the dam and the inflow into the dam was 5800 cusecs on Wednesday. Meanwhile, Kerala has expressed its dissent in Supreme Court on Wednesday after the Mullaperiyar dam supervisory committee had submitted before the Court that there was no need to change the 142 ft water height in the dam which was set by the Apex court.
Tamil Nadu Chief Minister, M.K. Stalin has on Wednesday night written a letter to his Kerala compatriot, Pinarayi Vijayan stating that the Tamil Nadu side was monitoring the situation of the Mullaperiyar dam and the water flow into it. The Tamil Nadu Chief Minister, in the letter also mentioned that the officials of both Kerala and Tamil Nadu are in constant touch with each other and that the situation was under control. The Tamil Nadu Chief Minister also said that the state was pumping out maximum water from the Mullaperiyar dam through the Vaigai tunnel into Tamil Nadu.
Stalin was responding to a letter sent by the Kerala Chief Minister on Monday that the water level in Mullaperiyar was rising rapidly and requested the Tamil Nadu side to take maximum water through the Vaigai tunnel for the state.
It may be noted that the Mullaperiyar dam constructed in 1895 by the British Engineer John Pennycuck is under major discussion between the states of Kerala and Tamil Nadu. While the Kerala side wants to construct a new dam by deactivating the present dam, there were several objections from the Tamil Nadu side. The United Nations Research University had recently in a report said that Mullaperiyar dam had outlived its life span and that like several dams that are above 50 years of age, Mullaperiyar was also in danger.
The Chief Ministers of Tamil Nadu and Kerala along with the water resources ministers of the respective states are slated to meet at Chennai in the month of December regarding the future course of action on Mullaperiyar.