Thiruvananthapuram, Dec 17 (ANI): Calling the simmering row between Kerala and Tamil Nadu over the century-old Mullaperiyar Dam an essentially 'human' issue, Congress lawmaker Shashi Tharoor has urged stakeholders to resolve the dispute at the earliest.
Expressing concern on the ongoing deadlock between both states, Tharoor appealed to locals as well as leaders to refrain from 'politicising' the issue.
"It is very sad that ordinary people are suffering from an unnecessary politicisation of the issue. For us, it is not a political issue. It is a human issue. It is an issue of human life, it is not an issue of politics. We really call on the people of Tamil Nadu not to make this an issue between our states. We are truly in this together," Tharoor added.
Highlighting the close ethnic and cultural ties between the people of the two states, Tharoor further assured that the decision to build a new dam would have no impact on Tamil Nadu's right to use water from the structure.
"I think it is extremely important that we do not allow Mullaperiyar to poison the relations between Tamil Nadu and Kerala. The two states should settle the matter amicably. Kerala has made it very clear that there is no question of depriving Tamil Nadu over a drop of water. As far as Kerala is concerned, the water that Tamil Nadu has been getting since the last 116 years, it can continue to get. No Kerala politician is opposed to that. We also are not happy with the rising of temperatures, burning of effigies, all of this must stop. The people of the two states have lived together side by side for millennia, and there should be absolutely no quarrel between them," said Tharoor.
Tharoor further said that the impending collapse of the dam and subsequent disaster was giving people in Kerala sleepless nights.
"All we are saying to Tamil Nadu is we will ensure that your basic needs for water are met. You please ensure that our basic needs for security are met. There are children who are not able to sleep at night. There are people who are not able to wake up, wondering that the dam, whether it may collapse on them, their homes will be washed away, we cannot have people living in fear. So, it is very important that a solution be found," he added
Kerala and Tamil Nadu are locked in a dispute over the dam located in Idduki District. The dam and the river are located in Kerala, but the dam is controlled and operated by Tamil Nadu. The safety of the dam has been a matter of concern and a point of dispute between the states of Kerala and Tamil Nadu.
While Tamil Nadu, the custodian of the structure, wants to increase the water level in the reservoir, Kerala has been insisting that it be reduced from the current 136 feet to 120 feet.
Kerala apprehends that this past-expiry date dam could crash and cause untold destruction in the state.
Kerala is arguing for the construction of a new dam at Mullaperiyar in place of the existing one, which is being opposed by Tamil Nadu. (ANI)