Kerala floods: State on edge as Tamil Nadu likely to open Mullaperiyar dam

Kerala floods: State on edge as Tamil Nadu likely to open Mullaperiyar dam

Reeling under the unprecedented havoc caused by heavy rains, the Kerala government on Tuesday decided do away with the 'Onam' celebrations this year and instead utilise the amount for relief operations.

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An orange alert has been sounded at the Mullaperiyar dam, the penultimate step to opening the sluice gates to drain the excess water from the reservoir. The dam, located on the Periyar river in Kerala, is operated and maintained by the Tamil Nadu government. The state relief commissioner of TN has indicated that the sluice gates would be opened due to heavy inflow of water in the reservoir.

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A 24*7 control room has been opened by the district administration of Idukki to respond to all the concerns of the locals. Relief camps have already been set up in areas near the dam to house those who will have to be relocated. All those living in low-lying areas have been asked to move to safer and higher areas.

With the opening of the Mullaperiyar shutters, more water is expected to be released from the Cheruthoni dam on the Idukki reservoir.

Most of the districts of the state have been receiving torrential rainfall since Tuesday morning. Chief minister Pinarayi Vijayan announced that the government will not celebrate Onam this year owing to the unprecedented flood situation. The money collected for the same will be used for relief efforts.