The controversial Mullaperiyar dam in Idukki district of Kerala.(HT FILE PHOTO)
The controversial Mullaperiyar dam in Idukki district of Kerala.(HT FILE PHOTO)

Mullaperiyar Row: Tamil Nadu files contempt plea against Kerala

Tamil Nadu has contended that the ongoing construction at Anavachal was in violation of the orders of the Supreme Court and was aimed at preventing the restoration of the storage level of the reservoir to the original level of 152 ft.
By MC Rajan | Hindustan Times, Chennai
PUBLISHED ON MAY 14, 2019 10:08 PM IST

The Tamil Nadu government has filed a contempt plea in the Supreme Court against Kerala charging it with constructing a multi-layer car parking lot in the catchment area of the Mullaperiyar dam.

In its petition last week, Tamil Nadu has contended that the ongoing construction at Anavachal was in violation of the orders of the top court and was aimed at preventing the restoration of the storage level of the reservoir to the original level of 152 ft. As such, Tamil Nadu had sought to restrain Kerala from proceeding with the construction works.

The 122-year-old colonial era dam situated at the inter-state border of Thekkady serves the irrigation and drinking water needs of Madurai and five southern districts of Tamil Nadu. In 1979, the storage was scaled down to 136 ft to carry out strengthening of the main dam. However, the apex court had in 2004 and 2014, held that the dam was safe and water level could be raised to 142 ft and in a phased manner to the original level of 152 ft.

In 2018, the apex court had permitted Kerala to go ahead with works for building canteen and an information centre but restrained it from constructing the parking lot.

The secretaries of Kerala Forest, Irrigation and Tourism departments, Periyar Tiger Reserve Deputy Director and the Principal Chief Conservator of Forests have been named as respondents in the case.

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