Thanjavur: The Public Works Department (PWD) has taken up renovation of more than 2,000-year- old Kachamangalam dam, 15-km from Grand Anicut in Thanjavur district.
One of the oldest dams in the area, even older than Grand Anaicut, built by Karikal Cholan in 2 CE, the dam irrigates 17,330 acres of land through canals that branch out from its north and south banks namely Ananda Cauvery, Pillaivaikkal and small canals lke Mahadevapuram canal and Thirupur canal.
The dam, across Vennar, stores water and supplies to Ananda Cauvery canal which fills up Kallaperambur lake. It also supplies water to Pillaivaikkal which fills up Allur Alisikudi lake.
Running to a length of 169.47-m, the dam is 2.41-m high. The dam has eight sluices. PWD engineers said that there is seepage of water and with a view to arrest it a three-m wall is erected in front of the dam.
Banks of Pillaivaikkal will be strengthened to a length of 3.8-kms and eight sluices will be repaired. “Work, which began in March is expected to be completed in 18 months. This is a world bank aided project,” said PWD engineers.
According to Mani Maran, researcher working at Saraswathi Mahal Library at Thanjavur, the dam must be 2,250 to 2,500 years old. Vennar is diverted here. “There is an epigraph which says that the northern bank of the dam was repaired by Viswanatha Nayak in 16th century,” Mani. Maran said. Mention about this dam is found in Sangam period Tamil literature like “Natrinai” and “Kurunthogai”.
Norms for taking silt, clay from PWD tanks & canals notified
People of Thanjavur district could apply for taking silt, soil and clay from lakes, tanks and canals belonging to PWD and rural development departments for their agriculture and domestic uses, said a press release issued here by A. Annadurai, district collector.
The collector said that silt, soil and clay from lakes and tanks is supplied free of cost and farmers can fill their fields for increasing fertility and potters can use the clay for making utensils.
According to an announcement in Thanjavur district gazette, 166 places have been identified in Thanjavur taluk for taking silt, soil or clay, while 73 places have been identified in Thiruvaiyarui taluk, 315 places in Orathanadu taluk, 136 places in Budalur taluk, 185 places in Kumbakonam taluk, 169 places in Papanasam taluk, 252 places in Thiruvidaimaruthur taluk, 473 places in Pattukottai taluk and 182 places in Peravurani taluk.
Last year 25,321 persons including farmers and potters benefitted by taking 47,65,572 cubic meters of silt, soil and clay. Those who want to benefit from this scheme this year can apply to respective taluk offices. Paddy field of the beneficiary should be adjacent to the lake, tank or canal either in the same revenue village or in revenue villages surrounding the water resource.
People can take within 75 cubic meters of silt, soil or clay for every two years for agriculture purpose in wet land, 90 cubic meters for every two years for agriculture in dry land and 30 cubic meters for domestic use for every two years. Letters issued to people for the purpose of taking silt, soil or clay is valid for 20 days to take the silt, soil or clay, he added.