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SC to Hear Mullaperiyar Dam Matter on December 10

PTI

Last Updated: November 22, 2021, 22:04 IST

New Delhi

SC is scheduled to hear the Mullaperiyar dam issue on Dec 10. (Image for representation: PTI)

SC is scheduled to hear the Mullaperiyar dam issue on Dec 10. (Image for representation: PTI)

During the hearing, the top court observed that there are several pending petitions on the matter and it will deal with all the issues raised in one proceeding.

The Supreme Court Monday said the issues about the 126-year-old Mullaperiyar dam would be heard on December 10 as the parties, including states of Tamil Nadu and Kerala, voiced that the main matter proceed expeditiously. The pleas raising issues about the dam, which was built in 1895 on the Periyar river in Idukki district of Kerala, came up for hearing before a bench of Justices A M Khanwilkar and C T Ravikumar.

In all fairness, it is submitted that there is no immediate direction sought at this stage and instead, the main matter itself be proceeded expeditiously. We have no difficulty in acceding to the request for expeditious disposal of the main proceeding, the bench said. During the hearing, the top court observed that there are several pending petitions on the matter and it will deal with all the issues raised in one proceeding.

The bench said it would permit the petitioners, who have filed separate pleas, to argue on the issues raised by them in the main proceeding as the matter should not get delayed. It said the bench is amid two part-heard matters and it would take up the petitions related to the Mullaperiyar dam issue for hearing immediately after hearing in these two matters get over.

Once the hearing commences, we will identify the areas which we need to inquire into, the bench said, adding, Let the matter commence. The top court had on November 13 said that issues raised about the dam are a matter of “continuous supervision".

On October 28, the apex court had said that Tamil Nadu and Kerala would abide by the water level notified by the expert committee. The Kerala government had recently told the apex court that “no amount of rejuvenation" can perpetuate the dam and there is a limit to the number of years one can keep dams in service through maintenance and strengthening measures.

It had said the only permanent solution for removing the “eternal threat owing to the safety concerns" of the dam and for protecting the safety of lakhs of people living the downstream of Mullaperiyar dam is to build a new dam in the downstream reaches of the existing dam. In an affidavit filed before the apex court, the Kerala government had urged that the proposal to fix the upper rule level of Mullaperiyar dam at 142 feet on September 20 as formulated by Tamil Nadu may be avoided.

In its response to the affidavit filed by Kerala, the state of Tamil Nadu has said that repeated assertion of Kerala and petitioners from there in the pleas filed from time-to-time seek to decommission of the existing dam and construction of a new dam, which is wholly impermissible in the light of the apex court verdict on the safety of the dam. “The dam has been found to be hydrologically, structurally, and seismically safe, Tamil Nadu has said.

The Tamil Nadu government has also told the apex court that “repeated assertion" by Kerala to seek decommissioning of the dam is “wholly impermissible" as the dam is hydrologically, structurally, and seismically safe On October 25, the apex court had said that the supervisory committee should take a firm decision on the maximum water level to be maintained in the dam.

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(This story has not been edited by News18 staff and is published from a syndicated news agency feed)
first published:November 22, 2021, 22:04 IST
last updated:November 22, 2021, 22:04 IST
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