Overhauling of Water Infrastructure

 Government of India has taken several steps towards comprehensively overhauling of the existing water infrastructure of the nation. For improving the safety and operational performances of some of the selected existing dams, Govt. of India implemented the Dam Rehabilitation and Improvement Project (DRIP), with financial assistance from the World Bank. Under the first phase of the DRIP program, which was implemented during April 2012 to March 2021, about 223 existing dams located in 7 States have been comprehensively rehabilitated at a cost of Rs. 2567 crore.

After the completion of DRIP Phase- I, Govt. of India has now taken up DRIP, Phases-II & III. The Scheme envisages rehabilitation of 736 dams located in nineteen (19) States with a budget outlay of Rs 10,211 crore. It is a State Sector Scheme with Central component. The Scheme is of 10 years duration. DRIP Phase-II has become operational from 12th October 2021. DRIP Phase-II entails financial assistance from the World Bank and the Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank (AIIB) to the tune of 500 Million US$.

Further, during 2016-17, ninety-nine (99) on-going Major/Medium irrigation projects (and 7 phases), in the country having balance estimated cost of Rs.77,595 crore (Central Assistance-Rs.31342 crore and State Share- Rs.46253 crore) under Pradhan Mantri Krishi Sinchayee Yojana (PMKSY) - Accelerated Irrigation Benefits Programme (AIBP), have been prioritized in consultation with States for completion in phases. Out of these, AIBP works of 46 projects have been reported to be completed. Under the PMKSY-AIBP scheme there are 7 Extension, Renovation and Modernization (ERM) projects. Rs. 1013.72 Crore have been released to respective States as Central Assistance for ERM projects during 2016-21.

 Government of India is also implementing the Repair, Renovation & Restoration (RRR) of water bodies Scheme under PMKSY (Har Khet Ko Pani). Under the RRR of Water Bodies scheme, since 12th Plan onwards, 2,218 schemes are ongoing with an estimated cost of Rs. 1,910 crore. Central Assistance (CA) of Rs. 476 crore has been released to States up to March, 2021. Further 1,591 water bodies are reported to have been completed up to March, 2021. Target irrigation potential restoration of these schemes is 1.887 lakh ha and out of this, 1.320 lakh ha is reported to be restored till March, 2021

The Union Government has recently enacted the Dam Safety Act, 2021 for surveillance, inspection, operation and maintenance of the specified dams for prevention of dam failure related disasters. As per this Act, dam owners have to take such measures as may be necessary to address safety concerns with a view to achieve satisfactory level of dam safety assurance.

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