CHENNAI: Tamil Nadu officials released water from the Mullaiperiyar dam on October 29 as per the Supreme Court directive and the water level can reach 142 ft on November 30, said Water Resources Minister Durai Murugan on Monday. The Minister’s clarification comes in the wake of charges levelled by the AIADMK and BJP for the past few of weeks over the release of water.
The Minister recalled that the SC order, dated October 28 in the writ petition filed by Dr. Joe Joseph of Kerala, mentioned the water level of the dam (the Rule Level approved by the Central Water Commission). “As per the Rule Curve approved by CWC, the levels to be maintained in the dam are on October 10 (138.50 ft), on October 20 (137.75 ft), and on October 31 (138 ft),” Durai Murugan said.
The Minister pointed out that from the afternoon of October 27, the water level was raising and on the morning of October 28, the water level was 138.05 ft, and on October, the water level went up to 138.75 ft while the permitted Rule level for the corresponding period was 138 ft.
“This increase was after drawing maximum water to Vaigai through the Tunnel. Thus, the excess had to be released through the spillway after the due advance intimation. Therefore, to follow the directive of the SC dated October 28, the water above the Rule level has to be necessarily released,” Durai Murugan added.
Further clarifying the issue, the Minister said advance information had to be given to the officers of Kerala before opening the Mullaiperiyar dam as per the SOP. Accordingly, an intimation was given on October 27 at 6 pm to Kerala and others stating that the water level in the dam was increasing. “Accordingly, the gates were opened on October 29, at 7.29 am. The Minister and Kerala officers were present. Thus, the decision to open the gates was made by the WRD, TN,” the Minister said.