The barrage being built across the Cauvery River at Mayanur in Karur district would be ready by February 2011, Deputy Chief Minister M.K. Stalin said here on Thursday.

The structure coming up close to the Kattalai Bed Regulator at a cost of Rs.189 crore, is the first step towards linking of the intra-State rivers.

“The work is progressing as scheduled and so far about Rs. 30 crore has been spent,” Mr. Stalin told reporters after inspecting the construction at the site along with K.N. Nehru, Transport Minister, and N. Selvaraj, Forest Minister. The Deputy Chief Minister was briefed on the progress of the project by M. Moorthy, Chief Engineer, Public Works Department (PWD), Tiruchi region, and K.K.Palanisamy, Superintending Engineer, PWD, Mid-Cauvery Basin.

The barrage, Mr. Stalin said, would help improve water management in four irrigation channels and the ground water table in the surrounding areas. It would store up to 1.04 tmc (thousand million cubic) feet of water and harness about 5.4 tmc feet of surplus flood discharges that would be taken through a canal to Agniyar, South Vellar, Manimuthar, Vaigai and Gundar.

Barrage at Tiruchi

Answering a query, Mr. Stalin said the PWD was working on a proposal for the construction of barrage across the Cauvery at Muthurasanallur near Tiruchi, to protect the City’s drinking water sources. “We have already taken up the matter with the Chief Minister and it was also discussed at length at the recent Collectors conference. The project estimates will be prepared soon,” he said. With the Cauvery River being heavily exploited in the region for various drinking water schemes, there have been widespread demands for a barrage near the City.

After inspecting the construction of the collector wells on the Cauvery River for the Manikandam Cauvery Combined Drinking Water Supply Scheme at Kadiyakurichi in Tiruchi district, Mr. Stalin said the scheme, sanctioned at a cost of Rs. 13.12 crore, is to be commissioned by March 2010. It would benefit a population of about 22 lakh in 146 habitations in 22 panchayats.

Asked about the State’s request for inclusion of the Tiruchi, Salem and Tirupur Corporations under the Jawaharlal Nehru National Urban Renewal Mission (JNNURM), Mr. Stalin said that steps were being taken to get the three urban local bodies included under the project next year.

Mr. Stalin also inspected a couple of ration shops at Allur and Mutharasanallur. At the Allur ration shop, which was closed, he was informed that the salesman had gone to get the kerosene allotment for the shop. Mr. Stalin instructed Collector T. Soundiah to verify the information and initiate action against the employee if it was untrue. He also inspected a tank renovated at a cost of Rs. 5.67 lakh under the Anaithu Grama Anna Marumalarchi Thittam at Mutharasanallur and new buildings constructed at a cost of Rs. 6.84 lakh under the School Renovation Programme at the Panchayat Union Middle School in the village.

At the Mutharasanallur ration shop, he interacted with the villagers to ascertain whether they were supplied all commodities regularly.