Staff Reporter

KARUR: The Tamil Nadu Toddy Movement has called upon the State and the Central Governments to take effective and urgent steps to protect the interests of the thousands of ayacutdars who depend on the river Amaravathy for irrigating their fields in view of the reported dam construction activity by Kerala across Pambar.

Movement co-ordinator S. Nallasamy said here on Friday that the move by Kerala Government bode ill for the farmers dependent on the Amaravathy as the Pambar was a major source of bringing rainwater.

The beneficiary regions in Tamil Nadu, including Coimbatore, Tirupur, Erode and Karur fell in the rain shadow region while the catchment areas of the river receive copious rainfall.

An estimated 60,000 acres under Amaravathy ayacut in those districts would be adversely affected should Kerala proceed with its plans to construct a barrage or a dam, Mr. Nallasamy pointed out. Not only irrigation but also drinking water sources might be affected, he opined calling upon the State and the Central Governments to act expeditiously in the matter.

The act of Kerala Government in diverting the Pambar water was against nature and militated against natural justice as well, Mr. Nallasamy observed. National water resources should be judiciously spent and should not be source of jingoistic actions and parochial activities, he added. Similarly, Mr. Nallasamy called upon intensified efforts on the part of the governmental agencies to protect the Amaravathy from further pollution onslaught. Dyeing, bleaching and other textile related industrial activities had spoiled the river, he said.