DHARMAPURI: Due to the surplus rainfall in Southwest monsoon, water level in eight dams in Dharmapuri district has increased and four dams have reached their maximum capacity. Data from the PWD (WRO) shows that at present 91% of the total storage capacity of 1762.88 mcft has been filled.
While farmers are happy about the amount of water available, they are also worried that the upcoming Northeast monsoon would cause severe flooding to low-lying areas and urged the PWD department to improve canals and clear overgrowths in canals to prevent flooding during the NE monsoon.
State president of Tamilaga Vivasayigal Sangam, SA Chinnasamy said, “This rainfall is a blessing to the district, which usually faces drought. After several years, we have had good rainfall and most of the water bodies are full and cultivation areas have also expanded. While farmers are delighted by the rain, there are also some concerns.
While dams are important for storing water, lakes are crucial for groundwater recharge, especially in Dharmapuri, where well irrigation is practised. The water released from the dams is unable to reach the lakes as most of the canals and lakes are severely dilapidated or overrun with shrubs. These overgrowths destroy the lake ecosystem and the administration must bring schemes to renovate the canals. There is also a high chance of floods as the canals may divert water into cultivation lands and homes.”
S Kannan, a farmer from Palacode said, “There is an increased chance of flooding as dams have reached their maximum capacity even without the NE monsoon. We request the administration to take steps to prevent flooding.”
A PWD (WRO) official said, “We have taken precautions. There is little chance of flooding and we will take the steps to ensure that homes and fields are protected.”
An official from DRDA said, “We have instructed panchayats to take the necessary steps to prevent flooding and we are closely monitoring the situation in DRDA-controlled water bodies.”