Mullaperiyar issue splits Kerala-Tamil Nadu bond

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Mullaperiyar Dam
Kochi, Nov 29: With the Mullaperiyar issue becoming an all-out war of words between the two states involved namely Kerala and Tamil Nadu, the matter is most likely to be resolved within the legal ambit only. The added fact that the 116-year-old Mullaperiyar dam is situated in a earthquake prone zone has instilled fear in the minds of Keralites.

With Kerala fearing the unleashing of the water bomb wiping off 5 million people living in 5 districts in the vicinity of the dam, Tamil Nadu is vehemently opposing rebuilding of the dam. But the fact that the untimely rains in Kerala has raised the water level to 136.4 feet also led to increased fears amongst all.

With Kerala seeking a legal opinion on the same, the state that will face the biggest manmade disaster of all time in case of a dam burst, there are protests and agitations underway to seek the Centre's intervention in the issue. With Tamil Nadu taking a tough stand on the issue and slamming Kerala's fears of a dam burst, the issue has taken an ugly turn.

On Monday, the Kerala government strongly stated that come what may a new dam will be built and said that they were answerable to the plight of the residents in the adjoining districts in the event of a tragedy.

The Tamil Nadu side led by MDMK leader Vaiko alleges that there is a fear psychosis being spread by certain vested interests in the minds of Keralites. It also states that two panels appointed by the Supreme Court have given a clean chit to the Mullaperiyar dam declaring that it is still strong.

With Kerala more than willing to resolve the issue out of court and saying time and again that the agreement will be adhered to and the water supply to Tamil Nadu continued, the state fears that the agreement will be violated when the new dam is built and becomes operational.

Five districts of Tamil Nadu including Madurai, Kambam, Theni, Dindigul and Ramanathapuram exclusively depends on water from Mullaperiyar for irrigation purposes and daily use.

The MPs from both states are on a protest in front of the Parliament and seeking an audience with PM Manmohan Singh to make him understand the gravity of the issue. With the amicable solution among both states not likely, there are political elements in both Kerala and Tamil Nadu that wants to take leverage out of the issue and eying the vote bank ahead of the elections. On what lies ahead for the residents of the 5 districts surrounding the Mullaperiyar dam remains to be seen.

OneIndia News

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