Mettur Dam

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Mettur Dam மேட்டூர் அணை
Mettur dam.jpg
Location Mettur, Salem District, Tamil Nadu, India
Coordinates 11°48′00″N 77°48′00″E / 11.80000°N 77.80000°E / 11.80000; 77.80000Coordinates: 11°48′00″N 77°48′00″E / 11.80000°N 77.80000°E / 11.80000; 77.80000
Opening date 1934
Dam and spillways
Height 120 feet (37 m)
Length 1,700 metres (5,600 ft)
Creates Stanley Reservoir
Capacity: 93.4 billion ft³ (2.64 km³)
Details in Tamil

The Mettur Dam is one of the largest dams in India. Built in 1934,[1] Ever since the Mettur dam across river Cauvery is called Stanley Dam Tamilnadu govt celebrated 75 years of Stanley Dam, where the Kaveri River enters the plains. It was constructed in 1934 and took 9 years to complete. Maximum height and width of the Dam are 214 and 171 feet respectively. Maximum storage height is 120 feet. Mettur Dam receives the water from both Kabini Dam and Krishna Raja Sagara Dam located in Karnataka. There are 2 hydroelectric power stations in Mettur Dam, the first constructed during British rule and the second during the Indian Republic. There is a park at the base of the dam called Ellis Park maintained by the Tamil Nadu Public Works Department. It provides irrigation facilities to parts of Salem, the length of Erode, Namakkal, Karur, Tiruchirappali and Thanjavur district for 271,000 acres (110,000 ha) of farm land.

The total length of the dam is 1,700 metres (5,600 ft). The dam creates Stanley Reservoir. The Mettur Hydro Electrical power project is also quite large. The dam, the park, the major hydroelectric power stations, and hills on all sides make Mettur a tourist attraction. Upstream from the dam is Hogenakal Falls. The maximum level of the dam is 120 ft (37 m) and the maximum capacity is 93.47 tmc ft.

Its capacity of 93.4 billion cubic feet (2.64 km3) is nearly twice that of its Karnataka counterpart of KRS; the dam is revered as the life and livelihood-giving asset of Tamil Nadu. It was built in-line with KRS Dam, which was designed by Sir M Vishveswariah[2] in 1911 and completed in 1917 near Mysore.


The United Kingdom provided funds for the dam and evacuated the people of Nayambadi village where the dam was eventually sited. When the water level of the reservoir recedes, even now age-old Hindu temples and churches emerge from it as proof. Those people who migrated from Nayambadi have settled down in Martalli and other nearby villages in the Kollegal district of the state of Karnataka.

Water dispute[edit]

The Mettur Dam has received public attention since the latter half of the 20th century, and especially in the mid-1990s, due to the Kaveri River water dispute between the States of Tamil Nadu and Karnataka.[3] Because of subsequent dams constructed across the Kaveri River in Karnataka, including the Kabini Dam, the Mettur Dam does not receive much water during lean seasons. As a result, the dam nearly goes dry during certain periods of the year, often when water is most needed by the farmers and the general public of the states of Karnataka and Tamil Nadu. This has created serious disputes and tension between the neighbouring states of Karnataka and Tamil Nadu. Governments of the respective states, the Supreme Court, and the Kaveri Tribunal have so far not been successful in resolving the dispute.

See also[edit]


  1. ^ "Mettur Dam". Archived from the original on 19 August 2006. Retrieved 2006-11-22. 
  2. ^ "Mettur Dam completes 74 years. Do you know how we struggled before building the dam with mysore Mettur Dam To Mysore Onthy way Reached Kolathout,..., India". Retrieved 2011-01-14. 
  3. ^ "Inter-state Water Disputes". Water Ministry - Government of India. Archived from the original on 12 February 2007. Retrieved 2006-11-23. 

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