Sardar Sarovar Dam - SSD

The project Sardar Sarovar Dam is inaugurated by PM Narendra Modi. SSD is located in the state of Gujarat on the Narmada river and is the largest dam in the Narmada Valley Project. The foundation stone of Sardar Sarovar Dam was laid out by the former Prime Minister Pt. Jawaharlal Nehru in 1961. 

The article aims to upkeep candidates preparing for various competitive exams about the Sardar Sarovar Dam, the background of the project Sardar Sarovar and the associated key facts.

SSD – Why in the News?

The Sardar Sarovar Dam has been in news recently because PM Modi has launched Seaplane Services from Sabarmati riverfront to Statue of Unity, which is on the SSD.

Hence, the facts related to Sardar Sarovar Dam are relevant for the IAS exam point of view.

Aspirants preparing for various Government exams must also carefully go through the information on Sardar Sarovar Dam as it is an important topic and can be asked in the General awareness section of the exams. 

Candidates preparing for any competitive exam can get assistance for comprehensive preparation from the following links-

Sardar Sarovar Project – SSP Background

  • The Sardar Sarovar Project was the brainchild of Sardar Vallabh Bhai Patel (India’s first deputy Prime Minister) in the view to arrest the excess flow of water from Narmada river to the Arabian sea. 

Aspirants can read the biography, and contributions of Sardar Vallabh Patel on the linked page. 

  • Pandit Jawaharlal Nehru had laid the foundation stone for the project in 1961. However, the construction of the project was started only in 1987. For information regarding Pt. Jawaharlal Nehru, visit the link provided here.
  • The Supreme Court stalled the project in 1995 as the project was a controversial one because many people objected to the construction of the dam citing environmental issues and the displacement of people. 

Aspirants can also know about various Inter-state water disputes in India on the linked page.

  • The Narmada Bachao Andolan was formed in order to protest against the project.
  • In 2000- 2001 the project was revived but with a lower height of 110.64 metres under directions from the SC, which was later increased in 2006 to 121.92 meters.
  • The Project was executed by Gujarat Government’s Sardar Sarovar Narmada Nigam Limited – SSNL.

Aspirants preparing for various competitive exams can go through the other related links given below-

Major River Systems in India Important Cities and River National Unity Day- Rashtriya Ekta Diwas
Dams in India List of World Longest Rivers National River of India

 About Sardar Sarovar Dam

  • Sardar Sarovar Project is a concrete gravity dam on the Narmada river in Kevadiya near Navagam, Gujarat.
  • It is the second-largest concrete dam in the world in terms of the volume of concrete used to construct the dam (after the Grand Coulee Dam in the United States).
  • It involves a series of large irrigation and hydroelectric multi-purpose dams.
  • The irrigation benefits accrue to the states of Rajasthan and Gujarat while the hydroelectric power of the SSP is to be shared by the states of Gujarat, Madhya Pradesh and Maharashtra. Maharashtra is to get around 57 percent of the electricity produced; Madhya Pradesh will get around 27 percent and Gujarat around 16 percent.
  • It was funded by the World Bank through its International Bank for Reconstruction and Development (IBRD), although it withdrew in 1994.
  • It is a part of the Narmada Valley Project, a large hydraulic engineering project involving the construction of a series of large irrigation and hydroelectric multi-purpose dams on the Narmada river.

Go through the important information and the list of hydroelectric power plants in India on the linked page. 

  • The Sardar Sarovar Project includes two powerhouses, the River Bed Power House – RBPH with an installed capacity of 1,200 MegaWatt and the Canal Head Power House with 250 MegaWatt).
  • The Narmada Control Authority decided on 17 June 2017 to raise the height of the Sardar Sarovar Dam to its fullest height 163 meter (depth) by ordering the closure of 30 Gates.  
  • It is the third-highest concrete dam in India with 138.68 metres height.
  • The Sardar Sarovar Project was inaugurated in September 2017 by Prime Minister Modi.

Sardar Sarovar Dam – SSD Key Facts

Sardar Sarovar Dam – Important Facts
Name of the Project Sardar Sarovar Project
Type of Dam Gravity dam 
Inaugurated on September 17 2017
Inaugurated by Prime Minister Narendra Modi
Height of the Dam (normal elevation) 138.68 metres
Depth of Sardar Sarovar Dam 163 metres approximately
Length of the Dam 1210 metres (3970 ft)
Construction Cost of SSP 25 Billion INR
Construction started 1987
Vision of SSD was Sardar Vallabh Bhai Patel
Foundation by Jawahar Lal Nehru

These facts would come in handy while preparing Current Affairs for different competitive exams. 

Aspirants preparing for various government exams can follow the links given below for assistance in their preparation.

Sardar Sarovar Dam – Benefits of the Project

  • Unused Water from Narmada river, which would otherwise flow into the sea, is used for serving many dry towns, villages and districts of Gujarat.
  • The project employed about one million people starting from the start to the end of the Sardar Sarovar project.
  • Provided electricity to the unserved regions and also to the farmers.
  • Provided water for irrigation and for drinking purposes.
  • Around 800,000 hectares of land in Gujarat and approx 2,46,000 hectares of land in Rajasthan are irrigated by the water of SSD. It is said that it provides drinking water to 131 towns and cities and around 9,633 villages in the four states, mostly the drought-prone areas of Kutch and Saurashtra.
  • Provided flood protection to an area of about 30,000 hectares which is prone to the fury of floods.
  • Wildlife sanctuaries will also be benefited

Other related links

National Green Tribunal National River Linking Project
National Water Informatics Centre (NWIC) Terminologies Related to Rivers

Candidates preparing for the UPSC exam can check the links given below –

  1. IAS 2023
  2. UPSC Calendar 2023
  3. UPSC Syllabus
  4. NCERT Notes: Geography Notes For UPSC 2023

You can also check out the preparation strategies for competitive exams to fine-tune your exam prep.
UPSC 2023


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