CM MK Stalin was replying to a letter written by Kerala CM Vijayan asking him to regulate water discharge from Mullaperiyar dam since Kerala was facing heavy rainfall.
Tamil Nadu Chief Minister MK Stalin has written to his Kerala counterpart Pinarayi Vijayan responding to the latter’s concerns over the regulation of water in Mullaperiyar dam, and has assured him that the state is keeping in mind the safety of the people. In his letter to the Kerala Chief Minister on Tuesday, August 9, CM Stalin said, “I wish to reassure you that that the dam is safe in all respects and flood regulation of the dam is being done as per the Rule Curve and Gate Operation schedule approved by the Central Water Commission in February 2021.”
Rule curve specifies the storage or the empty space in a reservoir at any given time. This also determines the opening and closing of the reservoir gates and is decided by the Central Water Commission (CWC). In monsoon, the CWC changes these numbers every ten days based on the present water level in a reservoir.
Stalin’s letter said that rainfall in the catchment areas of Mullaperiyar dam was less when compared to the downstream areas of the dam. The field officers were asked to divert as much water as possible to the Vaigai basin and strictly follow the rule curve levels and the gate operation schedule, as per the flood regulation protocol.
He added that Tamil Nadu field officers informed authorities in Kerala on August 4 about the possibility of opening the spillway gates on the next day, August 5. He added, “This was done in anticipation of future inflows and this information was also sent to the District Collector of Idukki and other officers concerned in Kerala.” The letter mentioned that the water was released incrementally so that sudden and forceful releases could be avoided.
Concluding the letter, CM Stalin said, “I, therefore, once again reiterate that our dam management team is very focused on the precautionary measures to be taken on time for ensuring the safety of the people residing in the downstream of the Mullai Periyar Dam.” (sic) He added that the officers-in-charge of operating the dam have been instructed to take precautionary measures and maintain continuous communication with the respective authorities in Kerala.