Is Tulsi Dam safe? Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation asked to check
Forest department writes letter to Mumbai civic body seeking a structural audit of the century-old dam
Incidents of wall collapse due to heavy rainfall in the city have forced the forest department to send a reminder to the Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) for a structural audit of the Tulsi Dam, which has been pending for more than two years now. The lake, which is situated in the core forest area of Sanjay Gandhi National Park (SGNP), supplies potable water to the surrounding areas.
According to sources, last week following reports of damage to a small part of the wall ahead of the Vihar Dam, civic officials had said that it would be fixed once the water level of the lake goes down. The officials further said that they would engage experts to inspect the dams in the city and carry out the required audits.
A couple of years back, when the banks of Dahisar river got flooded due to heavy rainfall, it posed a threat to all the settlements in and around SGNP. At that time the forest department had written a letter to the BMC regarding it and had also sought a structural audit of the Tulsi Dam. Speaking on condition of anonymity, an official said, "Recently after a part of the Tiware Dam got damaged, the situation affected Chiplun area of Ratnagiri in Konkan region of Maharashtra. Lessons need to be learnt but not after a disaster happens."
Speaking to mid-day, Anwar Ahmad, director and chief conservator of forest, SGNP, said, "Couple of years back a letter was written to the BMC seeking a structural audit of the century old Tulsi dam, which is situated in the core forest area of SGNP. This year also a reminder was sent in July requesting them to start the process at the earliest." Ashok Tawadia, deputy municipal commissioner (Special Engineering), said, "The Dam Safety Organisation from Nagpur carries out pre-monsoon and post-monsoon inspections of all the dams and sends their observations. We will ask them to check the structural stability of the structures."
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