As per guidelines given by the Water Resources Commission, TN is supposed to alert Kerala 12 hours ahead of opening the shutters

Mullaperiyar Dam Kerala Govt to approach SC over TNs decision to open 3 shutters
news Tuesday, December 08, 2015 - 14:01

Kerala Water Resources Minister PJ Joseph said in the Assembly on Monday that the government would soon approach the Supreme Court against Tamil Nadu, for opening the shutters of the Mullaperiyar Dam without prior intimation.

As water level in the Mullaperiyar dam reached 142 feet, which is the maximum level permitted by the Supreme Court, eight of the 13 spillway shutters were opened by Tamil Nadu on Monday, which allowed water to flow to the Idukki dam.

Later, when the water level decreased, the shutters were closed on Tuesday early morning, and again three shutters were opened thereafter, as water level increased.

When eight shutters were opened on Monday, there was widespread furore in Idukki that Tamil Nadu allegedly breached the rules in opening the shutters, as no proper warning or intimation was issued before opening the shutters.

As per guidelines given by the Water Resources Commission, TN is supposed to alert Kerala 12 hours ahead of opening the shutters so that settlements near the dam can be relocated in case of any eventuality.

Till now, around 200 families in the area surrounding the dam have been evacuated as a result of the increased outflow of water due to intermittent opening of the shutters.

Chief Minister Oommen Chandy said in the Assembly that Tamil Nadu was not ready to even talk about the issue.

Meanwhile opposition MLA Bijimol has put forward an adjournment motion against the government for not taking the right steps in the issue.

Local people had on Monday protested against TN’s move of opening shutters without any warning. They also alleged that even the commission appointed by the Supreme Court was not informed before the shutters were opened.

Earlier when the water level had considerably risen in the Mullaperiyar dam, Tamil Nadu had started drawing more water from the dam since last week and since Sunday, TN has been drawing 1816 cubic feet water per second, which is said to be the maximum amount it can draw through four pen stock pipes and the Irachilpalam canal.

Kerala and Tamil Nadu have been arguing about the Mullaperiyar dam built under a co-signed agreement in 1886 between the Maharaja of Travancore and the British authorities. The dam, which is located in the Idukki district of Kerala, serves the districts of Tamil Nadu, which owns, operates and maintains it.

Though Kerala had objected, in 2014, the Supreme Court allowed the Tamil Nadu government to increase the water level of the Mullaperiyar dam up to a maximum of 142 feet. It was in November 2014 that the water level in the Mullaperiyar reservoir touched the 142-feet mark for the first time in 35 years.

 

 

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