Prof. Ramaswamy R Iyer, in an article in EPW (pdf) asks:

The Mullapperiyar dam is one of the oldest dams in service in the world. The current dispute between Tamil Nadu and Kerala is not over water but over the safety of the 111-year-old dam. What steps can be taken to resolve this dispute?

His suggestions are not too different from that of Chacko’s (in spirit); however, the piece does give a neat summary of the issue and an eight point solution measure. Take a look!