Monday, June 24, 2024

Kerala’s all-party team to meet Prime Minister


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Thiruvananthapuram: Intensifying its campaign for a new reservoir at Mullaperiyar, an all-party delegation from Kerala will soon meet Prime Minister Manmohan Singh. The state today filed an interim plea in Supreme Court seeking to lower the water level to 120 ft in the 116-year-old dam.

The date for the delegation to go Delhi would be decided after the Prime Minister’s appointment, Chief Minister Oommen told reporters after a cabinet meeting.

The all-party delegation, which would include Chief Minister and the Opposition leader, would press for a new dam in view of the serious safety concerns caused due to frequent tremors in Idukki district where the present structure is located.

To reinforce its case that the dam is weak, the state would ask IIT Roorkie to expedite the report it had sought on the “dam-break analysis” based on which the government could draw up a detailed report on the magnitude of the disaster in case the dam collapses.

As part of the disaster management plans, a Flood Field Mapping Unit would be set up at Thekkadi, near the dam site, and a satelite imaging of the area would be conducted using digital technology.

Strengthening the legal measures, a four-member cabinet sub-committee was formed to prepare a detailed affidavit on the disaster management plans to be submitted to the Kerala High Court.

Reiterating the call for restraint on the part of protesters, Chandy said there had been some attempts from the other side to inflate some minor incidents which had led to further reaction.

Kerala wants to resolve the dam issue without disturbing its cordial relations with Tamil Nadu, Chandy said and termed as unfortunate the incidents of violence that had recently taken place in connection with the matter.

Kerala DGP Jacob Punnose was in touch with Tamil Nadu police to tackle the situation and the latter had offered co-operation, he said. Referring to the controversy over Advocate General K P Dandapani’s submissions in the High court, Chandy said it was a “closed chapter” as he (AG) had explained his position to the cabinet.

“We are struggling for a lofty cause and we should move unitedly for achieving it.

If there are mistakes in that endeavour, they would be corrected,” he said.

Chandy said Dandapani explained that he had not made any statements contradicting the state’s position in the case and that some points he made had been misquoted by a section of media. (PTI)


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