Gujarat has been successful in inter-linking several of its rivers, according to the state government. In the past five years, while the waters from river Narmada were diverted to 29 rivers across the state, the waters of Mahi, Sabarmati and Tapi rivers fed an additional 12 rivers in the state, the state government told the Gujarat Assembly recently.
There are 185 rivers in Gujarat, the state government said in a written reply to a unstarred question posed by Becharaji Congress MLA, Bharatji Thakor, during the fourth session of the legislature that was held in July 2019, which was made public by the government in the ongoing session.
Of the 185 rivers, 29 were fed with waters from the Narmada river in the past five years and that includes 10 rivers of Saurashtra region where water was diverted through the link canals of the SAUNI (Saurashtra-Narmada Avartaran Irrigation) Yojana.
The rivers in Saurashtra that were fed with Narmada waters diverted through the SAUNI project were Macchu, Demi, Bangavadi, Aji, Und, Bhogvo, Vansal, Goma, Ankadiya and Hiren. The state government also stated that it spent Rs 175.11 crore between 2015-’16 and September 30, 2018 in transferring water through various link canals built under the SAUNI yojana.
The other rivers that were fed with Narmada waters are Khari, Rupen, Pushpavati, Saraswati, Banas, Jhiliya, Chikariyo, Dev, Heran, Kun, Saudak, Vatrak, Mehor, Meshwo, Sakra, Falku and Brahmani among others.
Apart from the massive transfer of water from Narmada to other rivers during this five year period, rivers of Mahisagar flowing through central Gujarat were diverted to 10 rivers. The waters of Mahi river have been diverted using the Sujalam Sufalam canals to rivers like Shedi, Lavari, Mahor, Dhamani, Varanshi, Vatrak, Majam, Meshwo, Khari and Sabarmati, the state government said in its written reply.
During this five-year period ending on August 30, 2018, the waters of Sabarmati river was diverted to Saraswati river, while the water from Tapi river in South Gujarat was diverted to Auranga river, the government said adding that the waters were diverted for “irrigation purposes”.
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