THIRUVANANTHAPURAM IDUKKI: Chief Minister Oommen Chandy on Thursday said the state would apprise the Supreme Court and the National Green Tribunal of the potential damage the increased water level in the Mullaperiyar dam could cause to the region’s biodiversity and ecosystem.
“With the increase in the water level, there’s an unusual situation in the region. Issues related to the loss of wildlife and ecosystem that arise in the wake of the increase in the water level will be brought to the attention of the Supreme Court and the National Green Tribunal,” Chandy said.
Officials of the Forest Department have initiated preliminary steps to assess the possible damage to the wildlife and ecology, a day after the government directed Principal Chief Conservator of Forests V Gopinath to file a report in this regard within two days. Gopinath visited the dam in this connection.
Meanwhile, Tamil Nadu asserted that it would raise the water level to 142 ft, allowing the water to touch the mark after a gap of over three decades.
Talking to reporters at Kumily, Theni District Collector Palanisamy said the moment the level touched the 142-ft mark, the state would start drawing water for irrigation purposes and power generation at the lower camp in Cumbum.
Tamil Nadu will take all the water flowing into the dam in the event of the level reaching the permissible mark, he added.
The neighbouring state stopped taking water from the dam even as the level reached the 141.85-ft mark. The inflow into the dam was only 772 cubic feet per second (cusecs) while there was no outflow to Tamil Nadu in the evening. The intake until the morning was 147 cusecs.
Idukki MP Joice George and Supreme Court-appointed panel member V J Kurien also visited the dam. Joice later told mediapersons that Tamil Nadu had hurled down the gauntlet to Kerala by not drawing water even as the Vaigai dam had only 37 percent of water. More: P7