IDUKKI: Rising water levels in the Mullaperiyar dam due to heavy rains and issuance of the first warning has triggered panic among people living downstream of more than a century-year-old dam at Thekkady.
Even as the water level in the dam stands at a safe storage level of 134.20 ft as per the data released by the district administration on Saturday at 11 pm, of the total capacity of 142 ft, the water level is expected to rise if heavy rain continues to lash in the catchment area in the coming days.
Considering the situation, a warning was issued on Friday night after the water level in the dam reached 132.60 ft by 8 pm.
The water level recorded in Mullaperiyar on same day last year was 116 ft, 18 ft less than the present water level. However on August 14, 2018, the water level in the dam rising to 137 ft forced the authorities to open its shutters as a precautionary measure.
Tamil Nadu presently discharges 1671 cusecs of water (1600 via four penstocks and remaining through Erachilpalam) from the Mullaperiyar dam, which has resulted in stabilizing the water level in the reservoir.
Meanwhile the inflow of water into the dam on Saturday was 8143 cusecs. However water level in the Idukki reservoir standing at a safe level of 2358.94 against FRL of 2403 ft has given as heave of relief to the authorities.
"Even if there comes a situation to open the shutters of the dam, Idukki dam presently has the capacity to hold the water released from dam. Hence as of now no serious concern regarding dams prevails in Idukki," Power Minister MM Mani told media persons on Saturday.
Meanwhile in view of the heavy rain lashing in Idukki for the past couple of days, the KSEB authorities have opened the shutters of minor dams like Malankara, Kallarkkutty, and Lower Periyar to stabilize the water level.