Supreme Court Dismissed Review Petition Filed By Kerala Government on Mullaperiyar Issue

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The hon’ble Apex Court dismissed the review petition filed by the Government of Kerala to review the verdict pronounced on May 7. The judgment stated that the Mullaperiyar dam is to be kept safe and the permission was granted to the Government of Tamil Nadu to increase the level of water to 142 feet and ultimately to 152 feet following the finishing works to be undertaken for maintaining the dam safely. The Court also refused to have a hearing on the matter and observed that there exits no cause to interfere with the conclusion reached out by the Constitutional bench. The Court held that the application for the open hearing is rejected and the Court has analyzed the papers and petition. There was no sufficient cause to review the judgment. Hence, the Court dismissed the review petition filed by Kerala.

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The bench was headed by hon’ble Chief Justice, H L Dattu and consisted of Justices J Chelameswar, C Nagappan, M B Lokur and M Y Eqbal. On May 7, Constitutional bench chaired by Chief Justice R M Lodha pronounced the judgment which struck down the law passed by the Kerala legislature that announced Mullaperiyar dam as in danger of extinction and determined the level of water at 136 feet. In this verdict, the Court pulled up the Government of Kerala for formulating a law that overruled its judgment passed in the year 2006 that announced the dam as safe and permitted the Tamil Nadu Government to increase the level of water.

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The Court said that Mullaperiyar dam is a brickwork dam which was erected according to the Periyar Lake Lease Agreement, 1886 on 29th of October, 1886 connecting the River Periyar. The construction works were completed only in 1895 after 15 years of its work. The dam is located in the State of Kerala in the District of Thekkady. Though it is placed in Kerala, the ownership vests with the State of Tamil Nadu and the operational works are conducted by that State. The dam is 1200 feet long and 155 feet high.