The Mullaperiyar Agitation Council, which is spearheading an agitation for a new dam in Mullaperiyar on Monday termed the Supreme Court order giving permission for conducting the maintenance work of the dam as only a “temporary solutution”, and said that it hoped the final judgement will allay the fears of the people living on the downstream of the age-old structure.

He said that by merely giving permission for conducting the maintenance work will not help in the long-run in consideration of the age-old structure. However, with the monsoon season already set in, a temporary solution was needed even as the downstream area is ill-equipped to deal a calamity-like situation.

Giving a cautious reaction to the Supreme Court decision, Fr Joy Nirappel, chairman of the council said that an age-old structure could not ensure safety in the long run even if maintained well and the damage has already inherent in the structure which was built at a time when the technology was not in an advanced stage and the material used for it was of poor in terms quality. Even the engineers who constructed it have not acknowledged that it would last for a long period. How could even an advanced technology on a structurally weak dam provide make it strong enough to resist the constant pressure from the water?, he asked.

By constructing a new dam, the people of Tamil Nadu could draw water, while the people on the downstream area could live peacefully, he said. It is a long term solution for the interest of both the States, he said. There needed to be a logical conclusion to the threat perceptive being raised by the age-old structure, which is irreparable and the apex court will take a final decision taking in to consideration of the anguish of people. He said that there is no going back from the relay hunger strike at Karimkulam Chappathu and it is a peaceful agitation for a public cause going on for over 2,000 days.

More In: Kochi | Kerala | National