CHENNAI: Chief Minister J Jayalalithaa on Friday announced that Mettur dam would be opened from August 9 for irrigation in Cauvery delta areas and appealed to the farmers to use the water judiciously and ensure maximum yield. The water release would benefit Samba and Thaladi crops in over 12 lakh acres of lands.
"Normally, Mettur dam is opened for irrigation on June 12 when the storage stands at 90 feet. The south-west monsoon began in June in catchment areas in Karnataka and Kerala but the rainfall was insufficient in that month. Following this, the storage level in Mettur stood just at 74.21 feet on June 12. Since the inflow into Mettur was also less, the dam could not be opened on June 12 for irrigation", the Chief Minister said in a statement here.
The Chief Minister further said she had announced Rs.40.97 crore package for delta farmers apart from providing three phase power for 12 hours per day to help the farmers in taking up cultivation.Since the south west monsoon was slightly better during July in Cauvery catchment areas, the storage level in Mettur dam had gone up gradually and touched 95.91 feet today. Considering the expectation that the southwest monsoon would be normal during August and that the due share of Cauvery water would be released by Karnataka and also in the expectation that the northeast monsoon would be normal in Tamil Nadu, Mettur dam would be opened on August 9.