New Delhi: In a setback for the Kerala government in the Mullaperiyar dam row, a five-member Supreme Court-appointed panel has stated that the dam is safe. The report even backs Tamil Nadu's demand to raise the water level of the dam that lies in Kerala's territory from 136 feet to 142 feet.
CNN-IBN has accessed the report prepared by the SC expert committee. The very basic question, how safe is the century old dam, has been clearly answered. The report says the dam is systematically, hydrologically and seismologically safe, and hence the water level in the dam can be increased to 142 feet.
For several years, the bone of contention has been the height of the water level in the dam. Tamil Nadu, which depends on waters released from the dam, maintains that the water level should be at 142 feet.
However, Kerala has maintained that a new dam be built near the existing structure, claiming that the present structure is weak.
The pitch for a new dam resurfaced in 2011 when 22 mild tremors were felt around the dam region. The Supreme Court-appointed panel however says all this has not affected the dam.
Though Kerala hasn't officially reacted to the report, sources tell CNN-IBN that it will raise its objections to the report when the apex court asks for its response. It now takes up the matter on July 23.