Cooum comes alive after recent rain, check dams turn into tourist attraction

People are flocking to the Pudhumavilangai where the check dam, with fresh water overflowing, presents a feast for the eyes; surplus water is being diverted to nearby lakes

Published - November 17, 2022 08:45 pm IST - CHENNAI

The check dam across the Cooum near Pudhumavilangai in Tiruvallur district has been overflowing in the last few days.

The check dam across the Cooum near Pudhumavilangai in Tiruvallur district has been overflowing in the last few days. | Photo Credit: SPECIAL ARRANGEMENT

For the third consecutive northeast monsoon, the clean stretch of the Cooum in Tiruvallur district is having a good flow and the water has been overflowing in recent days in most check dams across the river.

With the river swelling in the city limits, officials of the Water Resources Department hope that it would wash away the sewage stagnating in the stream.

Visual treat

The overflowing check dam across the river at Pudhumavilangai, located 50 km away from Chennai, offers a feast for the eyes. Several people are flocking to the location to get a glimpse of the pristine 100-metre wide stretch of the river. It has also become a popular spot for fishing.

| Video Credit: Special Arrangement

Officials said six check dams across the clean portion of the Cooum have been overflowing for the past few days. Besides shoring up the storage of the lakes in Putlur, Kannapalayam and Paruthipattu near Avadi, the inflow has resulted in recently restored check dams in Jamin Korattur and Sorancheri overflowing. This has also boosted the water table in the neighbourhood. For instance, excess water from Pudhumavilangai check dam was diverted to tanks in Agaram, Kadambathur and Kesavanallathur through a channel.

Most of these lakes can store 20 to 50 million cubic feet of water in them. The copious flow in the river for three to four months for the third consecutive year has boosted the water table by up to five metres. This has brought cheer to people living in the villages along the river, the officials said.

In places like Putlur, considerable flow in the river has helped dilute the sewage pollution from Tiruvallur municipality.

Much of the inflow from areas upstream like Ranipet and Kaveripakkam near Kesavaram anicut is being diverted to the Kosasthalaiyar and Poondi reservoir. Once the Poondi reservoir touches its full capacity, the water level in the river downstream of the reservoir would rise, an official said. The minimum storage maintained near every check dam and the lean flow in the river during many months helped aquatic ecosystems thrive, the official added.

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