Water governance in the Narmada basin - A review paper from the Water Governance Project

The paper reviews contentious issues related to water governance in the Narmada river basin like the riparian rights of States over apportionment of the use of the waters for large dam-centered canal irrigation and hydro-electric power development and the later disputes around the appropriateness of this model of development given the tremendous environmental and social costs associated with it.

It begins by detailing the geographical characteristics and resource endowments of the basin followed by a description of the status of agricultural and industrial development and their impact on the water quality. The dispute over river water sharing and its resolution is described followed by details of some of the major projects under construction in the basin.

The problematization of centralized water governance by the Narmada Bachao Andolan and its culmination in the Supreme Court case is detailed thereafter. This is followed by a review of the various problems of large dam-centered water resource development. The various traditional and modern alternative approaches to water resource use and governance in the basin are described before concluding the review.

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Post By: Amita Bhaduri