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Today Date : Tuesday, April 16, 2024

CM opens mettur dam for irrigation

CM opens mettur dam for irrigation

The Tamilnadu Chief Minister M.K Stalin opened the Mettur Dam for Cauvery delta irrigation today morning 20 days ahead of the customary date of June 12.According to the government's release the early opening would enable the Cauvery delta farmers to take up Kuruvai paddy cultivation in advance and in a wider area. It will also enable early commencement of the second crop, Samba. 

This is the first time since independence of the country the dam is being opened in the month of May. Since its construction before 88 years the dam had been opened 10 times  before June 12. 
In 1947 it was opened in May and as an exception in the year 2011 it was opened before June 12 due to floods.

The commencement of Cauvery delta irrigation had been unpredictable in the past due to insufficient rains and low storage levels. For several years the Cauvery delta irrigation could not be commenced on the customary date and has been postponed till  the beginning of the North East monsoon. Thus Kuruvai cultivation had been given up completely or done on a smaller scale in the past few years. 

However the  Mettur dam was opened on the right time in the last two years. This year the inflow into the dam was high during the summer months touching a peak receipt of 50,000 cusces a day. 
The water level and storage of the dam rose rapidly and was about to reach the full reservoir level of 120 feet any time. At the time of opening  of the dam today by Chief Minister Stalin, the water level was 117.750  feet and the storage was 89.942 tmcft as against its full capacity of 93.47 tmcft.
PWD  official sources said that an initial quantum of 3000 cusecs is being released from the Mettur and this will be stepped up in phased manner to 10,000, 16,000 cusces and according to the need the release will be increased to 18,000 cusecs in the month of August. 

The released water will reach Kallanai on May 27th. Kuruvai crop is being cultivated over an extent of 5. 22 lakh acres in the delta districts. This would require 125 tmcft of water of which 90 tmcft will be 
supplied from Mettur dam and the rest is expected to be managed from rainfall and ground water.
After opening the dam the Chief Minister took a look at the photograph exhibition of the channel repair works undertaken in the delta districts and rare photos of the construction of the dam and its history. 

According to a release from the government, the water channels in the Cauvery delta have been repaired and desilted in advance and the works have been completed.  This will enable rise in water table and enable cultivation of summer crops.

When the water is released from the Mettur Dam 250 MW of electricity would be produced in two power houses and 210 MW will be produced by the mini generators in the seven barrages downstream. Over 1700 million liters of water will be drawn from the lower Cauvery and for 155 drinking water schemes in 18 districts.
Durai Murugan, Minister for Water Resources, K.N Nehru, Minister for Municipal Administration, S.S Sivashankar, Minister for Transport, S. Senthil Kumar, S.R Parthban and  A.K.B Chinraj,  Members of the Parliament , R.Rajenderan, Salem North MLA,  Sandip Saxena, Additional Secretary, PWD Water Resources Wing, S.Karmegam, Salem Collector, Ramamurthy,  Chief Engineer, PWD Water Resources Wing were among those present.