Kerala responds to TN's demand, increases water level in Siruvani

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Siruvani dam. Photo: Mathrubhumi

Thiruvananthapuram: Kerala Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan on Monday assured his Tamil Nadu counterpart M K Stalin that steps will be taken to provide maximum water supply to Tamil Nadu from Siruvani Dam in the Palakkad district of the state, even as the government increased the water level in the rerservoir.

Stalin had a telephonic conversation with Vijayan and thanked him over the matter.

A day after the Tamil Nadu CM wrote to Vijayan urging him to maintain storage in Siruvani Dam up to the Full Reservoir Level (FRL) to meet the water requirements of Coimbatore city in and its suburbs in his state, Vijayan responded saying the water level in the dam was increased to 75 MLD (million litres a day) from 45 MLD on Sunday further to 103 MLD on Monday.

Noting that the maximum possible discharge level is 103 MLD as per the design of the dam, Vijayan said the matter would be discussed in detail soon and a consensus would be reached.

In his letter, Stalin had said the Kerala irrigation department is maintaining the maximum water level of Siruvani Dam at 877 m instead of the Full Reservoir Level (FRL) at 878.5 m, as stipulated in the inter-state agreement.

Lowering the water level by 1.5 m results in a shortage of 122.05 million cubic feet (MCFT) of water, which is 19 per cent of the total storage.

This creates difficulties in catering to the needs of Coimbatore city in summer months, he had said. For the past six years, Tamil Nadu has received water only in the range of 0.484 TMC to 1.128 TMC, as against 1.30 TMC stipulated in the agreement.

Tamil Nadu has been continuously requesting Kerala to take steps to ensure FRL storage and despite him writing to Vijayan in February, no steps have been taken so far to restore the storage to FRL, Stalin had noted.

On Monday, Stalin thanked Vijayan for increasing the water level in Siruvani dam. He spoke to the Kerala CM over the phone, an official release in Chennai said.

In Coimbatore, officials said that after reviewing the situation, the Tamil Nadu Water Supply and Drainage Board will inform both the district collector and Corporation Commissioner for necessaray follow up. PTI

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