The devastating flood in Kerala, which has already taken lives of 97 people since August, 8, was confirmed to be a consequence of severe cyclonic storms in a report prepared by the Hydrology (South) Directorate of Hydrological Studies Organisation of the Central Water Commission(CWC), New Delhi and not of dams releasing water. It is the worst flood since 1924, having experiencing cyclones from 8 to 9 August and 15 to 17 August. It resulted in heavy flooding in the Periyar, Pampa, Chalakudy and Bharatapuzha sub-basins of Kerala. The Idukki Dam absorbed 60 million cubic meter of water in the past few days and the damages couldn’t be mitigated even with 75% full condition, as rainfall was severe in the past 3-4 days. In 27 years, all five shutters of Idukki Dam were opened, but the amount of outflow is almost equal to the amount of inflow. The absence of reservoirs in the Pampa, Manimala, Meenachil and Achenkovil and shrinkage of the capacity of the Vembanad Lake and the Thottappally spillway has worsened the flood in the Kuttanad region. The dams didn’t play any role in the flood as they were almost full due to increased rainfall in the last months. The CWC has recommended the review of rule curves for all the reservoirs. Also, the approach channels to Thottappally spillway and the passage of the Thaneermukkom barrage should be widened for the effective discharge of flood runoffs from the Vembanad Lake. Moreover, Kerala should build suitable storage reservoirs, wherever necessary for flood moderation and other multipurpose uses, especially in the Periyar, Pampa and Achenkovil basins. Some dams like the Poringalkuthu dam should be inspected by the Dam Safety Review Panel(DRSP). PM Modi has assured more help and relief from the center with the CWC continuously monitoring the situation. Dam waters are only being released in phases and in such manner that the flood doesn’t get any more worse.
Tags : #India#Environment#Kerala Flood