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Rising water level at Mullaperiyar dam alarms Kerala

Mullaperiyar dam

Idukki (Kerala): The water level at the Mullaperiyar dam on Monday reached 141.7 feet, barely inches short of the level of 142 feet allowed by the Supreme Court, officials said.

According to the May 2014 directive of the Supreme Court, the Tamil Nadu government is allowed to increase the water level only up to 142 feet, officials added.

Following heavy rains in and around the dam site, Tamil Nadu has increased its off take by three times since Monday and as per the apex court directive once the water level touches 142 feet, the shutters of the dam will be opened forcing the water to drain towards the Idukki dam located downstream.

The authorities have sounded a red alert as about 129 families live downstream.

Kerala and Tamil Nadu have been at loggerheads over the dam, built under an 1886 accord between the then Maharaja of Travancore and the erstwhile British regime.

Though the dam is located in Kerala, it is owned, maintained and operated by Tamil Nadu and the former has for long been demanding de-commissioning of the more than a century-old dam that has developed leaks.