All 15 canals on the upper stream of Cauvery from Grand Anicut have been opened
The Public Works Department on Sunday opened the Kollidam regulator and began discharging surplus water from the Upper Anicut (Mukkombu).
The Kollidam regulator has been opened for discharging surplus water for the second consecutive year. Since the inflow into the Cauvery at Mukkombu Upper Anicut crossed 40,000 cusecs, which was 15,000 cusecs more than the delta requirement, the officials opened the Kollidam regulator at around 8 am on Sunday and released 5,000 cusecs. Due to subsequent increase in flow into the Cauvery, the officials stepped up the release. It was originally planned to let surplus water from the northern arm of the Kollidam regulator. But, at around 11.00 a.m., the officials changed the decision and began discharging water from the southern arm, where a portion of the regulator was washed away last year. The quantum of release of surplus water that stood at 5,000 cusecs on Sunday morning went up to 20,000 cusecs in the evening. Release of 35,000 cusecs from Mukkombu into the Cauvery was maintained for irrigation. In order to derive advantage, the officials said that all 15 canals on the upper stream of the Cauvery from the Grand Anicut have been opened. They had been carrying water to their maximum capacity.
Collector S. Sivarasu, who visited Mukkombu Upper Anicut to take stock of the ground situation, told The Hindu that it has been decided to maintain about 30,000 to 35,000 cusecs in the Cauvery. It was sufficient for irrigation in Tiruchi, Thanjavur and other delta districts. Remaining flow would be treated as surplus and the entire quantum would be let into the Kollidam.
He said consequent to the release of water into the Kollidam, the construction of new regulator across the Kollidam river at Upper Anicut has been temporarily suspended. Machineries and construction materials, which were used for construction, has been taken to safe areas.
Mr. Sivarasu said that there was no cause for worry as indications were that flow might not be more than 70,000 cusecs from Mettur dam. An alert has been sounded along the riverbeds of the Cauvery and the Kollidam. All officials including revenue, police, fire and rescue services personnel have been put on high alert.