New Delhi, Jul 16 (UNI) The Tamil Nadu government has informed the Supreme Court that Mullaperiyar dam is safe to hold water up to reservoir level of plus 142 feet and all the medium and long-term strengthening measures necessary have been duly carried out by it.
The Tamil Nadu government in its affidavit has also stated that the dam is safe and the seepage is within permissible limits.
According to the affidavit, as per the apex court judgement dated February 27, 2006, the State was permitted to carry out further strengthening measures as suggested by the expert committee and later when the said strengthening works were completed the water level in the Mullaperiyar dam can be restored to its original maximum water level of plus 142 feet.
The state government has also said the proposal put forth by the Kerala government for construction of a new dam is an afterthought because the CWC after considering the proposal had decided to strengthen the existing dam.
The affidavit further said, in the present scenario of the environmental issues and the large forest area and a sanctuary existing below the Mullaperiyar dam, it would be virtually impossible to concieve a new dam below the existing dam.
There is dispute between the State of Kerala and Tamil Nadu over raising the height of the dam and the Kerala government is strongly opposed to raise the height of the dam.
According to the Kerala government, the base of the dam is in a very bad state as it has wide cracks and if it gets further damaged, lakhs of people may be rendered homeless because several districts of Kerala might get inundated by the flood.
The Kerala assembly had passed a legislation in order to defy the Supreme Court directions.
The affidavit on behalf of the Tamil Nadu government has been filed by R Subaramaniam, vice-chairman of the Cauvery Technical Cell, Public Works Department, Tamil Nadu government.
The affidavit also said the Tamil Nadu government had appointed an experts committe in the year 2006 and after thorough examination and inspection of the dam and its base area, it was of the opinion that there was no threat to the dam.
The case is coming up for hearing on Monday next.
UNI SC LPB RP DS1620