Final raising of Sardar Sarovar Dam cleared by Narmada Control Authority
The decision of NCA will also help in providing drinking water to about 1 crore people and will also irrigate about 8 lakh hectares of area.
Narmada Control Authority (NCA) has cleared the proposal of final raising of the Sardar Sarovar Dam (SSD) in Gujarat by lowering of the gates and impounding of water in the reservoir up to its Full Reservoir Level (FRL) of EL 138.68 meters.
Before clearing the proposal for raising the Sardar Sarovar Dam, the NCA in its meeting on 16 June 2017 considered all aspects of Environmental and Resettlement and Rehabilitation (R&R) issues. The meet was chaired by Dr. Amarjit Singh, Secretary (WR, RD & GR).
Effects of lowering the Gates of SSD
With this lowering of the SSD, the live storage capacity of the dam would increase from 1565 to 5740 million cubic metres (MCM) i.e. by 4175 MCM (267%). Secondly, the clean hydro-power generation will go up by existing 1300 MW to 1450 MW with increase in annual generation by about 1100 Million Units (i.e. about Rs.400/- crore per annum).
In addition, this additional storage would irrigate about 8 lakh hectares and provide drinking water to about one crore people.
As it is well known, the Sardar Sarovar Project would primarily meet the water requirement of drought prone and desert areas of Gujarat and Rajasthan.
Prior to clearance by NCA, the Environment Sub-group of NCA chaired by Shri Ajay Narayan Jha, Secretary (MoEF&CC) reviewed the implementation of Environment Safeguard Measures on 1 May 2017 and after observing substantial progress, recommended Phase-II proposal of lowering down of the gates and impounding of water in the reservoir to FRL of EL 138.68 mts. The Environment Sub-group has also asked the State Governments to complete leftover works by 30 June 2017.
The Resettlement and Rehabilitation sub-group chaired by G Latha Krishna Rao, Secretary (MoSJ&E) reviewed the progress of R&R and the opinions received from Grievance Redressal Authorities (GRAs) of the States of Gujarat, Madhya Pradesh and Maharashtra on 16 June 2017. The State Governments have assured to address all issues of Project Affected Families (PAFs) on priority basis in accordance with Narmada Water Disputes Tribunal (NWDT) Award, liberalized policies of the State Governments and Supreme Court Order dated 8 February 2017.
NCA has permitted final raising of SSD after following the procedure laid down by Supreme Court order dated 18 October 2000 in WP(C) 328 of 2002 in Narmada Bachao Andolan Vs. Union of India & others.
Last time the proposal of raising the SSD was cleared on 12 June 2014, wherein permission for Phase-I construction of piers, overhead bridge and installation of gates in open or raised position was granted. At that time, the effective height of SSD remained at EL 121.92 meters with backwater levels of EL 134.32 meters at dam site.
(Source: Press Information Bureau)