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September 18th, 2003
The Damned
Data: Water, India, and Construction
1901Construction of dam on Narmada River proposed.
1947Investigations begun into Narmada’s potential for irrigation and electricity.
1961Prime Minister Jawalarl Nehru lays foundation stone for Narmada dams project.
1985World Bank approves $450 million loan to India for Sardar Sarovar. Residents affected by the dam organize protest movement.
1961Government of Gujarat gives approval for Narmada Valley Project. The project includes plans for 3,165 small, medium and large dams. Prime Minister Nehru inaugurates the project.
1986Construction begins on Sardar Sarovar dam.
1993Citing project irregularities, World Bank withdraws from Sardar Sarovar.
1995India’s Supreme Court stops construction of dam.
2000Supreme Court allows building construction to continue up to 90 meters (295 ft.). Additional construction to the dam’s planned height of 138 meters (453 ft.) requires approval by the Narmada Control Authority in five-meter (16 ft.) increments.
2002Narmada Bachao Andolan protest movement reports est. 30,000 families not resettled. Dam’s height increased to 95 meters (312 ft.).
2003Sardar Sarovar dam reaches 103 meters (338 ft.). In July, earthquake of 4.3 magnitude shakes dam.

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