IAS officers to monitor Mettur flow

The State government has formed a special committee comprising eleven senior IAS officials to monitor the flow of water released from the Mettur dam into the Cauvery to ensure that it reaches the tail-end areas in time, Chief Minister Edappadi K. Palaniswami said here on Thursday.

The government would closely monitor the water level in the dam and streamline the discharge based on the needs of farmers of all the dozen Cauvery basin districts, Mr. Palaniswami said speaking to presspersons after opening the sluices of the Stanley reservoir.

Earlier, speaking at the function for opening the dam, the Chief Minister said that the State scored a major historic victory on establishing its rights on sharing Cauvery water thanks to the relentless legal battle waged by leaders late M. G. Ramachandran and Jayalalithaa.

Due to the efforts of these leaders, the Supreme Court had fixed 177.25 tmc (thousand million cubic feet) as Tamil Nadu’s share and also directed the formation of the Cauvery Water Management Authority and Cauvery Water Regulatory Committee recently. This has assured that Tamil Nadu will get its due share of water every year and there will be no need to wage legal battles and run from pillar to post here after for getting the same.

Mr. Palaniswami as per the directive of the Supreme Court and both the Central Government constituted bodies, the State got 9.15 tmc of water last month.

As per the orders, Tamil Nadu should get 31.24 tmc of water during the current month, 45.95 tmc in August; 36.76 tmc in September; 20.22 tmc in October; 13.78 tmc in November, 7.35 tmc in December and 2.7 tmc in January — the period covered by the annual irrigation calendar of the PWD.

For the next four months from February–May, the State should get 2.50 tmc every month. He said both the CMA and the Regulatory Committee would ensure the State’s share from this year onwards.

The quantum of water would be good for the Cauvery basin and also for farm operations under the east and west canal schemes of the dam in the districts of Salem, Erode and Namakkal during the scheduled period.

‘Close to Jaya’

Mr. Palaniswami said the Cauvery issue was very dear to the late Jayalalithaa. The day after her hospitalisation, Jayalalithaa discussed the issue of the meeting convened by the then Union Water Resources Minister Uma Bharathi on the Cauvery issue and directed him, the Chief Secretary, the PWD secr

etary to rush to New Delhi. “This was the last official decision taken by late Jayalalithaa as Chief Minister from her hospital bed and this only showed the attachment she had for the farming community and the keen interest she evinced on this issue,” Mr. Palaniswami said in a voice choked with emotion.

Mr. Palaniswami said he allowed the farmers of the villages surrounding the Mettur dam to lift fertile silt free of cost.

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