The Dam Safety Bill
The Central Government has introduced the Dam Safety Bill in the Lok Sabha by the Ministry of Jal Shakti. Currently, there are over 293 dams in our country which are more than 100 years old. The bill aims to look after the safekeeping and maintenance of these dams.
What the bill will do?
- The bill aims to establish a National Dam Safety Authority for proper monitoring, inspection, and repair & maintenance of specified dams.
- The National Dam Safety Authority is to act as a regulatory body which will implement the policy, guidelines, and standards for the proper surveillance, inspection, and maintenance of specified dams.?
- It will also address unsolved issues (if any) between State Dam Safety Organisations of two states.
- The State Dam Safety Organisation are obligated to keep perpetual surveillance, carry out inspections and monitor the operation and maintenance of specified dams under its own jurisdiction.
- The government has also proposed the setting up of a National Committee on Dam Safety in order to prevent dam failure-related disasters.
- As per the bill, the committee would look after standards of dam safety and also evolve policies for ensuring the safety of dams.
Current State of Dams in India
There are currently over 5,344 big dams in the country and of them, around 293 are more than 100 years old. Nearly, over 1,041 dams or 20% are 50 to 100 years old. Also, nearly 92% of the dams in the country are built over inter-state rivers and hence, they require a central approach.