An expert team, led by M.K. Parameswaran Nair, Chairman of the Mullaperiyar Special Cell, visited the Mullaperiyar dam on Sunday.

The visit assumes significance in the wake of a Supreme Court directive to study and report how the old dam should be demolished in the event of a decision being taken to build a new dam, as has been demanded by Kerala.

Mr. Parameswaran Nair told The Hindu that the water level in the reservoir would have to be brought down to a height of 94 feet from the present level of 133 feet before the work connected with the demolition of the old dam could be undertaken. He said the team would prepare a report on behalf of the State government for submission to the Supreme Court.

The expert team is trying to find a way to drain out the water stored in the reservoir through the spillways of the existing dam as the site of the proposed new dam is downstream of the present dam.

P. Lathika, a member of the team, said there were various proposals on the method to be adopted to demolish the dam and the team's visit was in the wake of a ministerial decision to find an area to deposit debris from the old dam, when it was demolished, without creating environmental problems.