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Jaya attacks DMK over Mullaperiyar dam

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Jaya attacks DMK over Mullaperiyar dam
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Dindigul: AIADMK supremo and Chief Minister Jayalalithaa Tuesday slammed DMK's electoral promise of striving to raise water level in Mullaiperiyar dam to 152 ft in line with a Supreme Court order, saying it had betrayed the people of the state by failure to implement it despite being part of ruling dispensation at the Centre for 17 years.

In her election address in Dindigul, which is one of the five districts benefiting from the inter-state river water, she recalled the 2006 Supreme Court verdict given in favour of her state allowing it to raise the level to 142 ft from 136 ft and subsequently to 152 ft following strengthening of the reservoir and expert analysis.

However, Kerala had enacted a legislation to circumvent the apex court verdict restricting water level at 136 ft, she said adding a case is pending in the Supreme court against this.

Tamil Nadu is locked in a row with the upper riparian state of Kerala which has been demanding a new reservoir, raising safety concerns about the more than a century old dam in Idukki District. Tamil Nadu has been opposing the state, saying such a move would deprive it of existing water share.

She asked what the Karunanidhi-led party had done while in power in the state between 2006-11 besides at the Centre for 17 years till 2013 to raise the water level.

"DMK, which had not taken efforts to raise the level to even 142 ft as per the court order, promises of striving to raise it to 152 ft. Isn't this a big fraud? Whom is DMK, which was silent whenever Centre was siding with Kerala, trying to mislead?" she asked on the emotive issue.

DMK had promised in its election manifesto for the April 24 Lok Sabha polls that it would strive to raise the water level to 152 ft by pressing Central government to implement the 2006 court order.

Among others, Karunanidhi did not press for CISF protection for the dam, not opposed the Centre's approval for undertaking study for a new dam and both Congress-led Centre and DMK had "betrayed" Tamil Nadu on this issue, she said while asking the people to defeat both the parties.

After coming to power in 2011, her government had expedited various steps to ensure Tamil Nadu's rights on the dam were upheld, including in the court, besides holding a special session of the Assembly to oppose the Kerala Assembly resolution seeking to decrease the water level to 120 ft.

She promised to continue with all efforts to uphold Tamil Nadu's welfare on this issue.

PTI

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