Water from KRS may be released to Tamil Nadu soon

The State government may release at least 20,000 cusecs of water from Krishnaraja Sagar (KRS) reservoir to Tamil Nadu, following the rapid increase in the level in the reservoir.

The level in KRS, constructed across the Cauvery river near Srirangapatna, touched 119.1 feet on Thursday, as against the full reservoir level of 124.8 feet.

According to measurements taken at 6 p.m., the inflow was at the rate of 41,583 cusecs and the outflow, 3,771 cusecs. Senior officials of the Irrigation Department said the crest gates of the reservoir would be opened on or before July 15 as Karnataka has to discharge at least 134 tmcft of water to Tamil Nadu between June and September, according to the final award of the Cauvery Water Dispute Tribunal.

The neighbouring State has already received over 35 tmcft of water from June 1 and it has been recorded at the water measuring station set up by the Central Water Commission at Biligundlu (inter-State border) in Krishnagiri district of Tamil Nadu, officials said.

While a large quantum of water is being released from Kabini reservoir at Heggada Devana Kote of Mysuru district, heavy rains have lashed the downstream areas of KRS and Kabini on several occasions since June 1, which has further augmented the flow as measured at the Biligundlu station.

At least 31 tmcft of water has to reach the Biligundlu point in July and it will be monitored by the Cauvery Water Management Authority. According to Cauvery Neeravari Nigam Ltd. officials, it is not advisable to store water beyond 123 feet for the first few days in view of the safety of the reservoir.

The KRS level is expected to reach that mark by Saturday given the current rate of inflow.Last year, the water level in the KRS on the corresponding day was 78.8 feet and the inflow was recorded at the rate of 2,683 cusecs.

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