Idamalayar, Pampa dams in Kerala opened

The Ernakulam district administration confirmed the opening of shutters 2 and 3 of Idamalayar dam by 50 centimetres each

A man walks inside the flooded Cochin international airport after the opening of Idamalayar, Cheruthoni and Mullaperiyar dam shutters following heavy rain, on the outskirts of Kochi, India, August 15, 2018. Credit: Reuters File Photo

The sluice gates of Idamalayar and Pampa reservoirs were opened early on Tuesday in the wake of increase in the water level and more rains forecast in the coming days in Kerala.

The development comes a day after the state government opened the shutters of Kakki and Sholayar dams to release surplus water.

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The Ernakulam district administration confirmed the opening of shutters 2 and 3 of Idamalayar dam by 50 centimetres each. Opening of shutters 3 and 4 of the Pampa dam by 45 centimetres each was confirmed by the Pathanamthitta district administration.

The state government on Monday had announced that Idukki dam, built across the Periyar river, Idamalayar in Ernakulam and Pampa dam, in Pathanamthitta, were going to be opened on Tuesday.

Even though rains subsided in several parts of Kerala on Monday, after receiving heavy downpour last week, the decision to open shutters of these dams was taken as water levels there had reached close to the danger marks and more rains were expected from Wednesday.

In view of the prevailing situation and expected worsening of weather conditions, the government had on Monday also cancelled pilgrimage to the Lord Ayyappa shrine in Sabarimala for the Thula masam poojas.

It had also advised people living in low lying areas and close to the rivers, whose dams have been opened or scheduled to be opened, to be vigilant and move to the relief camps set up across the state in the wake of the heavy rains which has claimed 38 lives so far.

According to the State Disaster Management Authority (SDMA), the number of rain-related deaths in Kerala from October 12 to October 18 is 38. During the same period, at least 90 houses have been destroyed in the rains while 702 houses have been partially damaged, SDMA has said. 

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