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SC strikes down Kerala Act that restricts dam height

New Delhi, May 7, 2014, IANS 11:28 IST
 The apex court constitution bench headed by Chief Justice R.M. Lodha, while striking down the Kerala Irrigation Water Conservation Act, said that the water level in the dam could be increased to 142 feet. PTI file photo

In a jolt to the Kerala government, the Supreme Court Wednesday struck down an Act that has sought to restrict the water level in Mullaperiyar dam at 136 feet.

The apex court constitution bench headed by Chief Justice R.M. Lodha, while striking down the Kerala Irrigation Water Conservation Act, said that the water level in the dam could be increased to 142 feet.

Holding that there was no threat to the safety of the 120-year old dam, the court Wednesday set up a three-member committee under whose supervision the water level will be increased from 136 feet to 142 feet.

To allay the apprehension of Kerala, court said that the three-member committee comprising a representative of the Central Water Commission and a representative each from Kerala and Tamil Nadu will carry out regular inspections.

The committee will be headed by the representative of the Central Water Commission.

The apex court's verdict is a setback to Kerala's efforts to pull down the dam on the grounds of it being unsafe and then build a new dam.

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