Iranamadu tank, Dudley and Sirisena
Recently, news broke out that the old plaque at Inranamadu Tank had been destroyed to pave way for a new plaque unveiled by President Maithripala Sirisena. Above is a clear picture of the dismantled previous plaque. It is mentioned in the plaque that this tank was built during 1903 to 1920. The tank was developed and improved by Dudley Senanayake, then the Minister of Agriculture and Lands under the instructions of Late D.S. Senanayake, the first Prime Minister of Sri Lanka. It was completed by P.B. Bulankulame, then the Minister of Land and land Development. The name of W.T.I. Alagaratnam, then the irrigation Director was mentioned thereto on June 5, 1954, the date of declared open.
This is an important part of the history. During the latter part of said period the Prime Minister was John Kotelawala. D.S. Senanayake passed away in 1953. Dudley Senanayake, the successor resigned from the premiership after the hartal in 1953.
This dam across the river, Kanagarayan Aru was completed and filled with water in 1921 despite the delay due to First World War. Water was retained in amalgamated two lower lands on the banks of Kanagarayan Aru at a cost of Rs 194,000/-. This tank was named after “Iranamadu”, which means two ponds.
The dam which had been initially 20ft high was raised to 30ft in 1951 and 32ft in 1954. Accordingly the capacity was increased to 82,000 acre ft. Again the height of the dam was increased to 34ft in 1975. When it was found that the strength of the dam was not sufficient to hold such capacity, water filling level was reduced to 32ft. Accordingly. the capacity reduced to 82,000 acre ft. Around 22,000 acres were cultivated with the use of the water from this tank.
Above photograph shows the removed old plaque. Recently, this tank was reconstructed. President Maithreepala Sirisena declared open a new plaque to mark the event.
This tank was further developed at a cost of Rs 2,100 Mn, an aid by Asian Development Bank. Height of reconstructed dam is 36ft. The current capacity mentioned thereto is 148 Mn Cubic Meters. (120,000 Acre ft. Approximately)
Original article here. Translated by Rajendra Wijesinghe