The Supreme Court has issued a notice to Kerala on Tamil Nadu’s plea seeking execution of its order regarding the maintenance of the 116-year-old Mullaperiyar Dam. The Tamil Nadu government has alleged in its plea that Kerala is not allowing it to maintain the dam. The top court will hear the plea in the second week of July.
The two states have been engaged in a long legal battle over the maintenance of the dam located on the Periyar River in Idukki district of Kerala. The dam is operated by Tamil Nadu and the waters flowing through it are critical especially for farmers in southern Tamil Nadu districts like Madurai.
The safety of the aging dam, located in a seismically active zone, has been time and again raised by the Kerala government. Experts have said the dam would not withstand an earthquake above 6.0 magnitude. The terms of a lease agreement that a princely state had signed with the British government before Independence has also been a bone of contention between Kerala and Tamil Nadu. Tamil Nadu has insisted on raising the water level of the dam to 142 ft but Kerala has repeatedly flagged safety concerns.