The Public Works Department has resumed construction of a new barrage across the Kollidam river at Mukkombu near here after about a month.As per schedule, the barrage has to be completed in two years from the date of agreement.
Though the agreement was signed in March, the work begun in June. The firm that bagged the contract concentrated on mobilising men and materials from different parts of the country in the initial stage. The work was suspended in the first week of September due to discharge of surplus water in the Kollidam as Mettur dam reached its full capacity. Discharge of surplus water was maintained for about a week. After regrouping the men and machineries at the project site, the company has resumed the work. According to PWD sources, the project duration has been framed after taking into consideration various factors including monsoon and flow of water in the Cauvery and the Kollidam.
A senior official of the PWD said that about 15 % of the work had been completed. There might be some hiccups in the initial stage of any major work. The progress of work was being monitored at regular interval. The work might be disrupted frequently due to monsoon rain. But it was expected to gain momentum once the monsoon season was over. He said as many as 200 workers and 50 engineers have been working on shift basis. Installation of pile foundation for 55 piers and construction of diaphragm wall for 650 metres across the Kollidam had been taken up.
Installation of pile foundation for about 25 piers had been completed.The new barrage is being constructed at a cost of Rs. 387.50 crore with the assistance of National Bank for Agriculture and Rural Development. It will replace the 182-year-old regulator. A portion of it collapsed in August 2018. The new barrage is being constructed about 75 metre away from the damaged structure on downstream of the riverbed.