Tamil Nadu Chief Minister Jayalalithaa said on Wednesday that the Supreme Court’s “historic” verdict in the Mullaperiyar dam case safeguarded the livelihood of farmers of southern Tamil Nadu.

In a statement here, she said the case was filed by her government in 2006 against the amendments to the Kerala Irrigation and Water Conservation Act, which capped the dam’s storage at 136 feet. After the Cauvery water dispute and the Neyveli Lignite Corporation divestment issue, the Mullaperiyar case was the third in a series of victories that secured the rights of Tamil Nadu, thanks to the efforts of her government. “The news of Tamil Nadu’s rights being upheld [in the Mullaperiyar dam case] has given me unbridled joy,” she said, accusing the previous DMK government of doing nothing to protect the State’s rights in the issue.

Talking to reporters, Mr. Karunanidhi said: “I am happy with the judgement. Kerala has been asked not to build a new dam.”

PMK founder S. Ramadoss said the judgement came after a “slight delay,” but it was a welcome one. Charging the two Dravidian parties with compromising on the rights of the State, he said efforts should be made to increase the water level to 142 feet immediately. Further, measures to strengthen the dam and increase its capacity to 152 feet as per the Supreme Court’s 2006 verdict should be taken.

MDMK general secretary Vaiko said he was in peace after the verdict.

CPI(M) State secretary G. Ramakrishnan, Tamil Nadu Congress Committee president B.S. Gnanadesikan and Viduthalai Chiruthaigal Katchi leader Thol Thirumavalavan also welcomed the judgement.

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