No release of water from Mettur Dam on June 12: TN govt

No release of water from Mettur Dam on June 12: TN govt

Water from the Mettur dam will not be released on June 12 for the 'Kuruvai' (short-term) paddy cultivation in the Cauvery delta region for the seventh year in a row due to low storage, Chief Minister Edappadi K Palaniswami said on Friday.

Sluice Gates of the Stanley Reservoir at Mettur is usually opened on June 12 to facilitate Kuruvai crops in the delta region, but the deadline has been missed for the 58th time in the 84-year-old history of the dam.

While expressing his inability to release water from the Mettur dam, Palaniswami announced a Rs 115 crore package to help farmers take up cultivation using the available water resources. He announced a number of measures, including subsidies on seeds and on farm equipment, and other initiatives to enable farmers to take up Kuruvai cultivation around three lakh acres of farmland.

“Since water storage in Mettur is just around 39 feet, water cannot be released. Water could be released only when the storage touches 90 feet,” Palaniswami said. Farmers in the Delta region depend on water from Cauvery, that flows through Karnataka, for cultivation.

"Not happy with the government's decision," said Opposition Leader M K Stalin who had earlier demanded the government to release water on June 12. Stalin led a walkout of DMK members from the Assembly.
The DMK's allies, the Congress and the IUML, later walked out of the House on the same issue.

Around 16 lakh acres in the 12 Delta districts depend on the dam waters for Kuruvai cultivation, which has been adversely affected over the past couple of years.