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TNPSC VAO Basics of village administration - about Tamil Nadu Irrigation

                   TNPSC VAO Basic Study Material

                   TNPSC VAO- Tamil Nadu Irrigation

The Tamil Nadu irrigation sources are maintained either by public works department or by the concerned Panchayat union .

In Tamil Nadu we have thousands of Irrigation tanks/sources for storing  the surface rain water or water from rivers or from other sources for the cultivation of land.

Apart from these we can fed water directly from the rivers or river channels.

Here we have classified various rivers as per availability of water.

  • Class I – Perennial rivers, water available throughout the year (whole 12 Months)
  • Class II – Water available for 8 to 10 months (8-10 Months)
  • Class II – Water available for 5 to 8 months (5-8 months)
  • Class IV- Water available for 3 to 5 months (3-5 months)
  • Class V – Water available for less than 3 months (0-3 months).

Responsibility for maintenance of Irrigation:

The responsibility for proper maintenance of these irrigation lies with the Public work department and Rural Departments

If there is any repairs required for these tanks or any prevention from damage during the rainy season and protection of trees and the tanks requires attention of VAO at village level.

VAO must bring it to the knowledge of Revenue Divisional Officer or Collector if any action required to help the public to get the water un -interruptedly for irrigation.

What is meant by Irregular Irrigation?

The Ayacut of each irrigation canal source has been defined, so the water to any of the ayacut land should be taken only from the permitted canal source. So taking water other than these source is Irregular Irrigation.

For this Irregular Irrigation penalty should be levied. Action will be taken after the consultaion with Public works Department.

What is Meant by Illegal Irrigation?

Illegal Irrigation which means , when water is taken from Govt Source for Dry, Manavari, or Government Poromboke lands for Cultivaion.

Those lands which are not entitled to water from any of these sources, then only it is illegal. The land which is entitled to get water from Govt Source are Legal.

If there is any unauthorised withdrawal of water from Gvt Sources, it will consider as theft under Indian Penal code and there will be legal action against them.


The Public works department will prepare the estimate for tanks/Irrigation sources and which is send to the collector for remarks. The collector will examine the same on the need or otherwise and send back to the public works department with or without his remarks.

Public works department should not send any repair estimates for his remarks, instead they can send any need for change in Sill level of the existing sluices, crest level of weirs, surplus arrangements etc.. or any alteration is existing structures.

For Special Minor Irrigation project scheme, collectors agreement should be obtained.


Weirs (adjustable dam placed across a river to regulate the flow of water downstream).

Sluices (artificial passage for water fitted with gate or stopping or regulating flow).

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