No full reservoir level at Sholayar

The Kerala officials of the Joint Water Regulatory Board (JWRB) of the inter-State Parambikulam Aliyar Project (PAP) Agreement have registered their protest on Friday with their Tamil Nadu counterparts for not bringing the Kerala Sholayar to its Full Reservoir Level (FRL) of 2,663 ft on February 1 as per agreement.

The water level on Friday at Kerala Sholayar was only 2,645.6 ft, which is 17.4 feet below the FRL.

The PAP Agreement stipulates that Tamil Nadu should take PAP water only after filling the Kerala Sholayar reservoir to its FRL on September 1 and February 1 every year.

The Kerala officials said that Tamil Nadu could have filled the reservoir to its FRL if they had used the water in the Tamil Nadu Sholayar for power generation and released it to Kerala Sholayar.

The Kerala officials said that instead of giving water to Kerala, Tamil Nadu had diverted it to their areas for irrigation purposes. This was a blatant violation of PAP Agreement. On September 1, 2012, also they had violated the Agreement by not filling the Kerala Sholayar Reservoir to its FRL, the Kerala officials said.

Because of this the Chalakudy basin in Kerala would face severe drinking water shortage during the summer months of February, March and April this year.

If the Sholayar reservoir was filled Kerala would have got 5.42 thousand million cubic (tmc) ft water for use in the lean months from February to May in Chalakudy basin, benefitting the districts of Thrissur and Ernakulam.

Meanwhile, in the Chitturpuzha irrigation scheme, Tamil Nadu reduced the release of water to just 80 cusecs from Friday.

This would result in the drying up of almost the entire 45,000 acres of standing paddy crop in Chittur taluk.

It would also create acute drinking water problem in the Bharathapuzha basin, affecting the districts of Palakkad, Malappuram, and Thrissur, the Water Resources Department officials here said.

Tamil Nadu authorities reduced the release of water under the plea that in the first fortnight of this month they had to release only 100 million cubic ft as per agreement.

Kerala had given an intent for 350 cusecs of water at Manacadavu from February 1, but Tamil Nadu was releasing only 80 cusecs (cubit feet per second), which would not suffice to save the standing paddy crop in Chittur, the officials said.

As per the PAP Agreement, Tamil Nadu should release 7.25 tmcft water for Chitturpuzha every water year that ended in June. But so far it had released only 4.4 tmcft water for Chitturpuzha, the officials said.

  • Water release for Chitturpuzha scheme reduced

  • 4.4 tmcft released for scheme so far this water year