Almost all dams in Kerala still open; Idukki, Idamalayar partially shut

Cheruthoni Dam
A general view shows the Cheruthoni Dam with its shutters open after water levels reached a height 2395 ft. following torrential rains in south India state of Kerala, in Idukki on October 19, 2021. Photo: Appu S Narayanan/AFP

Thiruvananthapuram: The shutters of almost all the dams in the State continued to remain open even though there was not much rainfall on Friday.

But the two shutters of the Cheruthoni dam, which is part of the Idukki dam, were closed on Friday following a decline in the inflow of water from the catchment areas. The two shutters of the Idamalayar dam were also closed.

Of the total 37 dams in the State, the shutters of 35 dams still remain open.

All the 17 dams run by the Kerala State Electricity Board (KSEB) are releasing water from the dam. Of the 20 dams run by the State irrigation Department, 18 are releasing water.

The red alert is currently in force in the KSEB-run dams of Kundala, Kallarkutty, Sholayar, Annathodu, Pallivasal, Ponmudi, Erattayar and Lower Periyar, and in the Peechi dam, belonging to the Irrigation Department.

Third shutter of Idukki dam raised further

In the Idukki dam, the shutters 2 and 4 were closed. The third shutter, however, was raised from 35 cm to 40 cm, leading to a release of 4 lakh cubic meter water per second from the dam.

The water level in the dam was 2398.20 on Friday midnoon. The three shutters of the Cheruthoni dam were opened on Tuesday after heavy rainfall and inflow from the catchment areas.

According to the KSEB research wing, 27.657 million cubic meter water has been released to the Periyar from the dam till now. Water which could have been used for generating four crore units of power was released from the dam during this period. The loss for the KSEB is estimated to be Rs 25 crore.

The shutters of Idamalayar were closed after the water level receded below the blue alert level. There was no rain in the catchment area of the dam on Friday. Now, the water level in the dam is 165.13 meter. This amounts to 89.02 percent of the total storage limit. Its maximum storage level is 169 m.

Water level up in Mullapperiyar dam

The water level in the Mullaperiyar dam has gone up to 135.2 m. The maximum storage level is 142 m.

According to the order of the Central Water Commission, Tamil Nadu, which is in charge of the dam, can maintain a water level of 142 feet two times a year and is likely to raise the shutters only if the level touches this maximum mark.

As per the protocol in place to release water from the dam, Tamil Nadu will issue the first alert to Kerala when the level reaches 136 ft. Subsequently, the second alert would be given at 138 ft, the first warning at 140 ft and second warning at 141 ft. When the level reaches 142 ft, shutters of the dam would be lifted.  

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