Dam Safety Act can resolve Periyar dam row, CWC tells SC

1 April 2022, 11:59 am
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The Dam Safety Act 2021, which is a much wider statutory scheme, has come into force and its provisions may be a way for resolution of “impasse” in the matter pertaining to the 126-year-old Mullaperiyar Dam, the Supreme Court was told on Thursday.

The apex court asked the Centre to file a note detailing the time frame and also when the National Dam Safety Authority, envisaged under the 2021 Act, would be functional.

A bench headed by Justice AM Khanwilkar is hearing the pleas raising issues pertaining to the Mullaperiyar Dam, which was built in 1895 on Periyar river in Idukki district of Kerala.

Additional Solicitor General (ASG) Aishwarya Bhati, appearing for the Central Water Commission (CWC) and the supervisory committee, told the bench about the Dam Safety Act 2021 and said the legislation has come into force. “Your lordships may consider, this is a much wider statutory scheme now in place and under this scheme, the authority also has been notified. There is a provision, I will take your lordships through some of the relevant provisions and this may be a way for the resolution of the impasse that seems to have come,” Bhati told the bench, also comprising Justices AS Oka and CT Ravikumar.