TAMIL NADU

Water expert Mohanakrishnan dead

A. Mohanakrishnan

A. Mohanakrishnan  

Ex-Chief of Cauvery Technical Cell, he was the brain behind many projects

Veteran water expert and former Cauvery Technical Cell Chairman A. Mohanakrishnan, whose knowledge and expertise on issues relating to irrigation, water bodies and inter-State water disputes guided Tamil Nadu in taking informed decisions on water-related issues for more than two decades, died here on Sunday. He was 90.

“He had some chest infection and died of old age. He breathed his last at 4.10 p.m. on Sunday,” his son A.M. Muralidharan said. The funeral procession would start from his Anna Nagar residence at about 1 p.m. on Monday.

Mohanakrishnan served as the Chairman of the Cauvery Technical Cell (CTC) since its formation in 1990 till December 2012, and continued to be an Advisor for the Water Resources Department thereafter. It was during his tenure that the Cauvery Water Dispute Tribunal gave its verdict in 2007, allocating 419 TMC feet of Cauvery water to Tamil Nadu every year.

“He was a thorough gentleman. He was our guru on various issues. He served under different Chief Ministers and offered advice on various projects. He was the man behind many water projects in Tamil Nadu. It was him who invited me to join the CTC in 2002,” said R. Subramanian, Chairman, Cauvery Technical Cell.

Association with dams

An alumnus of the renowned Guindy College of Engineering of the 1948 batch, Mr. Mohanakrishnan, on graduation in civil engineering, had joined the government service as supervisor. Two years later, when he took the Public Services Commission examination, he emerged a topper, just as he did in the engineering degree course. Mohanakrishnan was associated with several dam projects in the 1950s and 1960s.

Mohanakrishnan served the Water Resources Department until his superannuation in 1984. Thereafter, he served for a few years as the Director of Irrigation Management Training Institute, which he was instrumental in setting up.

When the Cauvery Technical Cell was constituted in 1991, Mr. Mohanakrishnan was the natural choice to head the body.

Mohanakrishnan had also taught at the Anna University briefly. “He has authored many books on the history of various projects and his understanding on water-related issues was immense,” Mr. Subramanian added.

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