P.J. Joseph to meet TN Works Minister

The Ministerial-level talks between Kerala and Tamil Nadu on the inter-State Parambikulam Aliyar Project (PAP) agreement will be held in Thiruvananthapuram on April 28.

A delegation led by Tamil Nadu Public Works Department Minister K.V. Ramalingam, accompanied by Water Resources Organisation Secretary Sai Kumar and officials, will reach the State capital on Sunday to hold talks with a team led by Minister for Water Resources P.J. Joseph.

The Tamil Nadu delegation is also likely to demand more water from the Siruvani dam for Coimbatore and resuming of water supply from the Neyyar dam.

The State government’s decision to revive the Attappady Valley Irrigation Project to utilise a portion of Kerala’s share of the Cauvery water may also figure in the talks, Joint Water Regulatory Board officials here said.

On April 16, Kerala had filed a petition in the Supreme Court against Tamil Nadu for the alleged violation of the PAP agreement.

The State’s SOS to release water into the Chitturpuzha from the PAP was not considered by Tamil Nadu creating serious drinking water problem in Palakkad. Tamil Nadu had violated the pact many times since 1970-71 by not releasing Kerala’s share of water to the Sholayar reservoir for the Chalakudy basin and at the Manacadavu weir for the Chitturpuzha irrigation scheme.

As per the PAP agreement, Tamil Nadu has to ensure 12.3 tmcft water in the Kerala Sholayar a year. Also, it should maintain the full reservoir level (FRL) of 2,663 ft every September 1 and February 1 in the Kerala Sholayar reservoir.

The September 1 commitment had been honoured by Tamil Nadu only 12 times since 1970-71. A full reservoir level on February 1 is of prime importance for Kerala as it ensures 5.42 tmcft of water for the lean months from February to May.

At Chittur

Between 1970-71 and 2006-07, Tamil Nadu had violated the agreement 12 times by not providing 7.25 tmcft at the Manacadavu weir for use in the Chitturpuzha.

The JWRB officials said before the construction of the Aliyar and Thirumurthy dams, the entire yield of the two dams along with the yield above Manacadavu was flowing into the Bharathapuzha making the entire basin cultivable.