New Delhi: Maharashtra and Gujarat on Monday
inked pact with the Centre to prepare project reports to
inter-link rivers to benefit Greater Mumbai and water deficit
areas of north Gujarat.
The tripartite Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) was
signed by Chief Ministers of Maharashtra and Gujarat Ashok
Chavan and Narendra Modi respectively, and Water Resources
Minister P K Bansal in the presence of Prime Minister Manmohan
Singh here this evening.
According to the pact, Detailed Project Reports (DPRs)
of Damanganga-Pinjal Link Project and Par?Tapi?Narmada Link
Project will be prepared soon.
"The signing of this MoU is also a shining example of
cooperation and mutual understanding between the riparian
states in addressing water requirements," Singh said on the
Noting that increasing population, rapid urbanisation,
onset of globalisation and accelerated industrialisation has
resulted in manifold increase in the demand for water, the
Prime Minister stressed on the need to develop the water
resources in an integrated manner and adopting short and long
"Water resources projects including inter-basin
transfer play an important role in mitigating imbalances of
water availability and the likely adverse impacts of climate
change," he said.
Singh said the project of inter-linking of rivers will
bring immense benefits to the entire nation in terms of
increased irrigation and consequent increase in the production
of food and commercial crops.
The Damanganga-Pinjal link is expected to augment
water supply to the Greater Mumbai region by transfer of
surplus water of Damanganga basin at the proposed Bhugad and
Khargihill dam sites to Pinjal reservoir, officials said.
The three reservoirs will be connected by the 16.5 km
long Bhugad-Khargihill and 25.7 km long Khargihill?Pinjal
tunnels for transfer of about 909 Million cubic meter of water
annually. The Pinjal dam is across the river Pinjal in
Vaitarna basin, which supplies water to Mumbai.
The Par-Tapi-Narmada link envisages the transfer of
surplus water from west flowing rivers north of Damanganga
upto Tapi to water deficit areas in North Gujarat.
The link project consists of seven proposed reservoirs
on these rivers and a 395 km long link canal.
"The diverted water will be used to irrigate a total
of 1.63 lakh hectares annually in the districts of Valsad,
Navsari, Dang, Surat, Bharuch, Vadodara besides the drought
prone Saurashtra and Kutch region," they said.
Power houses proposed at the foot of the various dams
will also generate hydropower to the tune of about 32.5 MW,