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Gujarat Sardar Sarovar Dam
|Coordinates||21 49'49"N 73 44'50"E Coordinates : 21 49'N 73 aa'50"E|
|Owner(s)||Narmada Control Authority|
Dam And Spillways
|Type of dam||concrete, Gravity|
|Height (foundation)||163 m (535 ft)|
|Length||1,210 m (3,970 ft)|
|Spillway capacity||84,949 m3/s (2,999,900 cu ft/s)|
|Capacity||9,500,000,000 m3 (7,701,775 acre-ft)|
|Active capacity||5,800,000,000 m3 (4,702,137 acre-ft)|
|Catchment area||88,000 km2 (34,000 sq mi)|
|Surface area||375.33 km2 (144.92 sq mi)|
|Normal elevation||138m (453 ft)|
|Reservoir length||214 km (133 mi)|
|Max Reservoir width||16.10 km (10.00 mi)|
|Operator(s)||Sardar Sarovar Narmada Nigam Limited|
|Commission date||June 2006|
|Turbines||6 x 200 MW Francis pump-turbine|
|Canal||5 x 50 MW Kaplan-type|
|Installed capacity||1,450 MW|
The Gravity dam Sardar Sarovar Dam is located on the Narmada river just near Navagam, Gujarat State, India. This is the biggest dam and also is a part of Narmada River Valley Project, a great hydraulic engineering project which involves construction of an array of huge irrigation and multipurpose hydroelectric dams at Narmada River. This project was taking its form in 1979 and was a major part of development scheme for increasing irrigation and formation of hydroelectricity.
Planned at the Narmada, this one is 30th biggest dam, Sardar Sarovar Dam (SSD) is the biggest structure that has been built. Since its foundation its height is proposed to be of 535 feet (163 m). The project has a plan of irrigating more than 6,900 sq mi (18,000 km2), a large part in various drought prone areas of Saurashtra and Kutch. Main power plant of the dam is house to six Francis pump-turbines of 200 MW for generation of electricity affording a storage pump capability. In addition, another power plant at intake for main canal holds five Kaplan turbine-generators of 50 MW. Power facilities are having a total installation capacity of 1,450 MW. It is critically maintained that various negative impacts simply outweigh over its advantages.The project has created a discord between the citizens group Narmada Bachao Andolan and its government planners.
The strategy of harnessing river for the purpose of power generation and irrigation in Narmada Basin was brought to action in 1946. Main identified projects were seven including Bharuch project at the time of initial Survey and the four projects Bargi, Bharuch (Gujarat), Punasa (MP), and Tawa were considered as the topmost priority for carrying investigation. Later, when the investigation was complete, the main proposed dam in Gora, Gujarat having full reservoir level (FRL) 161 ft (49.80m) was chosen and late Prime Minister, Pandit Jawaharlal Nehru laid its foundation stone on 5th April, 1961. Although, as in more detail, modernised sheets of contour through the Survey of India were thereafter made available, various possibilities pointed towards raising the dam's height for utilizing water at optimum levels.
In 1964, for resolving the dispute regarding sharing of Narmada waters between Madhya Pradesh and Gujarat Government, an expert committee was appointed by the Indian Government under chairmanship of late Dr.Khosla under which a higher level of dam was suggested with FRL 500 ft (152.44m) during 1965. Although, as per the reports of Khosla Committee, Government of Madhya Pradesh didn't agree with the development plan of Narmada water. Hence, under Inter State River Water Disputes Act, , 1956, Indian Government constituted the Narmada Water Dispute Tribunal (NWDT) during 1969. NWDT pronounced its award during 1979.
The Narmada River and Basin
The Narmada river is the biggest flowing towards west direction which makes a rise near Amarkantak mountain range in M.P. This river is Gujarat's largest and is the fifth biggest river in country. Narmada traverses Maharashtra, Madhya Pradesh, Gujarat and then meets Gulf of Cambay. From the source till the sea total length of Narmada
River is 815 miles (1312 kilometers) while up to the site of dam the length is 723 miles (1163 kilometers). During high level floods the river channel's width at the site of dam is 1600 feet (488 meter) and during the summer time it is 150 feet (45.70 meter). The maximum amount of flood was recorded on 7th of September, 1994 and was of 2.5 million cusecs (70,847 cusecs) while during summers minimum flow was recorded which was 300 cusecs (8.5 cusecs). This dam was made for handling 3.07 million cusecs (87,000 cusecs) of flood.
The total area of basin of Narmada river is 97,410 square kilometer that comprises 9894 square kilometer covered in Gujarat, 1658 square kilometer covered in Maharashtra and 85,858 square kilometers covered in Madhya Pradesh. The area of drainage up to the site of dam is 88,000 square kilometer. Annual rainfall mean in the basin area is of 112 centimeters. The dam site's annual run at a dependability of 75 percentage is 27.22 MAF. A yield of 28.57 MAF was computed by the world bank while the central water Commission, Government of India computed the yield in May 1992 to be of 27.00 MAF (26.60 MAF). The Narmada River Basin's Utilization hardly reaches somewhere near 10%. Thus Narmada waters still continues to flow towards the sea in an unused state.
The Sardar Sarovar project helps in providing various facilities of irrigation to 18.45 lac ha. land that surrounds 3112 villages covering 73 talukas in Gujarat's 15 districts. It will also be able to irrigate 2,46,000 ha land in various strategic desert districts in Jallore and Barmer, Rajasthan and through lift 37,500 ha of land inside the hilly tribal tract of Maharashtra. Around 75% of area of command is prone to drought in Gujarat State while the whole command in Rajasthan state is prone to drought. Water supply is assured which will later make this whole region drought proof.
Drinking Water Supply
For the purpose of providing drinking water to 9633 villages (53% of 18144 villages of whole Gujarat) and 131 urban centres, a special allocation of water has been designed of 0.86 MAF, inside and outside command of Gujarat State for present population which is around 18 million and a prospective population of more than 40 million till the year 2021. Total urban centres and villages of arid areas of Kachchh and Saurashtra and every "no source" village and all villages that are affected through fluoride and salinity in north region of Gujarat will get benefits. Requirement of water supply for numerous industries will also be completed through this project that will provide a great boost to all-round production.
Two power houses will be present viz. Canal Head Power House and River Bed Power House having an installation capacity of 250 MW and 1200 MW respectively. Three states will be able to share the power - Gujarat 16%, Maharashtra 27% and Madhya Pradesh 57%. This provides a useful paking power for the country's whole western grid which is currently home to a very limited production of hydel power at present.
A large chain of small hydropower stations are also planned at the branch canals where some convenient falls can also be found.
The project also provides protection from flood to the reaches of riverine which measures 30,000 ha covering 210 villages and city of Bharuch and a total population of 4.0 lac in State of Gujarat.
It has also proposed for the development of various wildlife sanctuaries viz. Wild Ass Sanctuary at little Rann of Kachchh, Great Indian Bustard Sanctuary in Kachchh, Black Buck National Park at Velavadar, "Shoolpaneshewar wildlife sanctuary" at the left Bank, Alia bet located at the river mouth and Nal sarovar Bird Sanctuary.
SSP would result in generation of 5,000 million electricity units. On its completion, addtitional annual production in agriculture will be Rs 1600 crores, Rs 400 crores for generation of power, and Rs 175 crores for supply of water which aggregates around Rs. 2175 crores each year which is equivalent somewhere near to Rs 6.0 crores per day.
Small farmers (1 to 2 ha): 24.4%
Scheduled Tribe: 8.7%
Scheduled Caste: 9.1%
Against one tribal displaced,7 tribes would get benefits
Additionally, benefits would be provided to fisheries development, supply of water for industries, recreational facilities, conserved forest protection from grazers, agro industrial development and other secondary advantages like rise in vegetal cover in 3.4 M. Ham. CGA, generation of employment, profits from compensatory forest, 100 times plantation of trees and fixation of Carbon Dioxide (CO2) to great extent of 70 times.
Solar power generation
The Gujarat State Government plans for generation of solar power through placement of various solar panels over the canal making it quite advantageous for surrounding villages to recieve power and also providing help in reduction of evaporation of the precious water. For generation of 25 MW of power the first phase consist of covering 25 kilometers.
The SSP has been one of India's most controversial projects of dam and its impact on environment and net advantages and costs have become a topic debate discussion for various groups. Initially the world bank funded the SSD, but during 1994 it withdrew. Since late 1980's, the Narmada Dam remains to be the main centre of various protest and controversies.
One Infamous protest takes at the stage centre in Spanner films documentary 'Drowned Out (2002)', that follows the story of a tribal family who makes a decision of staying home and drown instead of making way for Narmada Dam. Earlier a documentary movie came out in 1995 named A Narmada Diary by Simantini Dhuru and Anand Patwardhan. Various efforts of NBA that were made for seeking environmental and social justice for those whose lives were directly affected through the construction of Sardar Sarovar Dam was featured prominently in this glorious award winning documentary (Filmfare award - Best Documentary 1996).
Medha Patkar, the leader of save Narmada movement "Narmada Bachao Andolan", was much of the figurehead of this protest. This whole movement was cemented during the year 1989, and was presented with the Right Livelihood award during 1991.
The Narmada river comes in one of the seven holiest rivers among Hindus. Thus Narmada mini-parikrama is considered to be some of the most pious thing that can be done by any Hindu. During the time of Parikrama, one has to walk clockwise around Narmada river, walking on the south bank from the source to the sea and sea to the source at the north direction, so that holy site always faces to the right side. The Pilgrim ideally carry no belongings with him and gratefully accepts any kind of hospitality that is shown throughout his way by the universe.
Roughly the whole journey has a distance of 2,600 kilometer and is completed in a time period of around two to three years. On making a visit to Narmada, in your way you may find various sadhus performing this holy act. Always remember that neither you have to make a following of their faith and nor visit to their extremes for showing your appreciation for river Narmada. You may treat each moment of your time with Narmada, as discovering a pilgrimage in oneself. As you make your visit across the ashrams, holy bathing sites and various small temples along with the river, you may feel the energy throughout your body that is formed in hers.
Besides the Narmada river innumerable Shiva temples may be found; many of these are well-known, like Shuklatirth and Nareshwar. Various temples named Surpaneshwar are present in here, so don't be confused throughout the way. Additionally to the more accessible one that is found near the site of dam, others can be found that are more precise in their atmosphere due to their seclusion.
On the Narmada river banks, where it comes in contact with the Dev river, can be found one Surpaneshwar Shiv temple which is located at a distance of just 5 kms from the Bharuch city and surrounds itself with the lush beautiful forests of the southern region of Gujarat. Instead of opting for trains, buses, and various other motor vehicles that will carry you towards numerous other sites on itinerary, you will reach there through a simple journey of two hours on a small boat from Bharuch city, providing you more time for sanctity of natural world, that is represented through a Shiva temple deep inside a dense forest.
Soolpaneshwar Wild Life Sanctuary
The beautiful hills of Satpuda range, a vast variety of raptors, various birds resembling affinities with Himalayan and Western Ghats, scenic atmosphere of the moist deciduous forest and thrill of travelling across a flying squirrel or a large python, pangolin or large cats...all of this can easily be enjoyed with the help of eco tourist at the Shoolpaneshwar Wildlife Sanctuary. This whole wildlife sanctuary covers an area of 607.71 sq. km in the Narmada district, which is responsible for comprising a major part of watershed that feeds the Sardar Sarovar and the Karjan reservoirs. The hilly tract of the whole Sanctuary that borders Narmada supports some best forests in the Gujarat state. The physical aspect is dominated by the hills of Rajpipla. DhamanMal is the highest peak and has its location in the eastern part, and is around 882 m high. The general peak of this area can be found towards the western region.
Forests of this region are densest and most lush in the whole State and are mostly known for possessing a great amount of richness in biodiversity. Various bird species have been sighted, which are having more affinities with the Himalayan and Western Ghat, unfolded an unknown hitherto, but also the interesting aspect of this region. The deciduous and Moist forests are having a very high aesthetic and scenic value. The ecosystem's flora represents remnants of moist deciduous to semi-evergreen forest. Most of the vegetation has been modified because of various forestry operations and influence of the biotic pressure
Moist mixed deciduous forest, moist teak forest, dry deciduous scrub, dry tropical riverine forest and dry bamboo brakes constitute some varied habitats inside the Sanctuary. All these types of forests merge towards each other imperceptibly. The principal species is the Teak tree. Pure bamboo Patches cover the whole north-western and western parts. 575 species of flowering plants inside the sanctuary was documented through a study.
If you make a visit to the Ratanmahal Sanctuary and have a chat with any tribal, most probably they would explain the sloth bear with fear. At times sloth bear can turn out to be more dangerous in comparison to a leopard. But, it indeed turns out to be a thrilling experience to catch a glimpse of the sloth bear in Ratanmahal Wildlife Sanctuary.
It can never turn out to be a 'killing-experience' if you are inside a vehicle and are accompanied by the guards. If you love wildlife watching then this is your ultimate place, here you may come across langurs, crested serpent eagle, a pit viper, a leopard, an Indian civet, a palm civet, Loten's sunbird, four-horned antelope, yellow checked tit and a grey junglefowl...! A visit to this wildlife sanctuary indeed is rewarding.
Around 55.65 sq. km area of the whole Sanctuary is triangular shaped landmass, which is responsible for covering reserve forest in 11 villages. The forest was originally property of ex-ruler of Devgadh Baria State. Around the sanctuary, eleven villages consisting of a total population of approximately 7000 are situated and in its interaction zone 41 villages can be found. The irrigation department covers a region of 150 ha. Jhabua district, Madhya Pradesh constitute a boundary in east and south region of the Sanctuary, whereas revenue regions in north and forests in western region surrounds the Sanctuary.