Shahpur Kandi dam project has resumed Jammu and Kashmir from 8 September. The Dam project was approved by Centre Government in 2008 but it was suspended due to the dispute between Jammu and Punjab region. It will provide electricity and irrigation facilities to the farmers of Jammu, Samba and Kathua. The fund for the project has been increased from 2285 crores to 2715 crores lately.
Talking to JK Media, Superintendent/ Chief Engineer of the project, Sudhir Gupta informed that notably, an agreement was signed on January 20, 1979, between the chief ministers of Punjab and Jammu and Kashmir under J&K Ravi Tawi irrigation scheme and the project was named as Shahpur Kandi dam project. It is as an extension to Ranjit Sagar Dam.
Work on the main dam and head regulators had commenced in March 2013. The construction was going on in full swing when suddenly, on August 30, 2016, J&K authorities intervened and stopped the work in J&K territory, citing the concerns related to the project.
With the intervention of the Union Ministry of Water Resources, River Development and Ganga Rejuvenation and Prime Minister’s Office, an agreement was signed between irrigation secretaries of both the states on March 3, 2017, subject to approval by the respective Government.
It was unanimously agreed that the work on the Shahpur Kandi Dam project would resume as soon as the respective state governments formally approved the decision.
The ambitious Shahpur Kandi dam project on river Ravi is a major irrigation project which will benefit both Jammu and Kashmir and Punjab. Jammu and Kashmir is entitled to 0.69 MAF (Million acre-foot) of water from Ravi and it is utilizing only 0.215 MAF.
This project will benefit the districts of Kathua and Samba, besides catering to some parts of Jammu district, the spokesperson said.
It will irrigate 32,000 hectares (80,000 acres) of agricultural land in the Kandi areas, upstream and downstream along the Jammu-Pathankot national highway in Samba and Kathua districts
If the Shahpur Kandi Dam Project was constructed in a given time, then it would have been completed in 2013 giving water and electricity to millions of people in J&K.
The project will be completed 42 weeks and the water is expected to flow to Jammu and Kashmir by the end of 2020, the Chief Engineer said.