Two sluice gates of Bhadbhada dam were opened on Tuesday evening around 7.30pm to let out water from Upper Lake that had filled to the brim due to incessant rainfall experienced in the last few days in its catchment areas.
Earlier around 4.30pm, heavy thundershowers lashed the city, setting the tone for opening up of the Bhadbhada gates.
The lake had been filling up consistently during last few days and there was high anticipation in the city about opening of the sluice gates of Bhadbhada, an occasion for Bhopal residents to celebrate.
This is the first time in 16 years that the gates had to be opened in July itself as the Upper Lake filled up very fast owing to heavy rainfall right in beginning of the rainy season.
Before this, the Bhadbhada gates were opened in July in 1997.
Despite the fact that it was already dark when the gates were opened, numerous residents gathered near the dam to watch the heavy flow of water gushing out of the two middle gates of the dam.
Despite the water being muddy, the scene was beautiful with the available light catching the mist arising out of the gushing water.
Bhopal Municipal Corporation officials said the decision to open gate number 4 and 5 was taken after the water level of the lake touched 1666.6 feet mark - just 0.2 feet of the full tank level (1666.8 feet).
The gates were expected to remain open at least till midnight so that the lake level could be stabilised.
Assistant engineer in-charge of Upper Lake, Rakesh Nigam told HT that since the very objective of constructing a dam on the Upper Lake was to ensure maintaining the level of the lake and letting out water in a moderate manner, a decision has been taken to open the gates repeatedly at regular intervals during the season.
Since the lake has filled up quite early in the season, a strict vigil would have to be maintained to ensure that there was no flooding downstream because of sudden heavy release of water.
Last year too the lake had achieved full tank level leading the dam gates being opened about half a dozen times starting from August 21.