Haryana to rejuvenate Saraswati river with water of Somb river
In an attempt to fulfil its commitment rejuvenate the extinct Saraswati river, the BJP-led Haryana government will construct a dam and reservoir to flow waters of the rainy Somb river into Saraswati
In an attempt to fulfil its commitment rejuvenate the extinct Saraswati river, the BJP-led Haryana government will construct a dam and reservoir to flow waters of the rainy Somb river into Saraswati.
Since there is no water to flow in the Saraswati river, the Haryana government will spend ₹216 crore on construction of a dam and a reservoir on around 80 acre on the Haryana-Himachal border near Adi-Badri which is considered the origin of the Saraswati river. Water from Somb river, a tributary of the Yamuna that originates in the Shivalik hills, will be stored to flow into Saraswati.
The Manohar Lal Khattar-led state government has taken help of the BJP-led Himachal Pradesh government to provide around 80 acre land for construction of the dam and reservoir and a memorandum of understanding (MoU) will be signed by the Haryana and Himachal Pradesh governments on Friday.
Officials monitoring the project said the dam and the reservoir will be used to store around 224 hectare metre water of which, 162 hectare metre will be stored to ensure flow of water in Saraswati river and the remaining 62 meter water will be given to Himachal Pradesh.
The entire ₹215.33 crore will be spent by the Haryana government and the Himachal Pradesh government will get benefits of the project and a share in the water.
Arvind Kaushik, superintending engineer of Saraswati Heritage Circle Kurukshetra of the irrigation department, said, “A dam and a reservoir will be constructed to store water of Somb river. Later, it will be used to ensure round-the-clock flow of 20 cusecs water into Saraswati river.”
He said the land for this project will be provided by the Himachal Pradesh government and construction work will be carried out by the Haryana government.
On when the project will be completed because the government is facing problems to acquire land for the river as a 7-km stretch of Saraswati river is missing from the revenue records in villages of Yamunanagar district, he said, “The issues have already been sorted out and work on the project will be completed by 2024.”
Dhuman Singh Kirmach, vice-president of the Saraswati Heritage Development Board said work on the project will start soon after the Haryana government inks the MoU with the Himachal government.
He said this water cannot be used for agricultural purposes but the flow of water throughout the year will help recharge the water table, especially in the dark zones of Kurukshetra and Kaithal districts.
Efforts to find and revive the river began in 2003 when the then BJP-led NDA government launched the Saraswati Heritage Project.
The BJP government in Haryana revived the project in 2015 and the Saraswati Heritage Development Board was formed under the chairmanship of the chief minister. In January 2019, the Haryana government approved 11 projects for rejuvenation of the mythical Saraswati river.