Narmada Basin Organization


About the Narmada Basin

Narmada basin extends over an area of 98796 sq. km. which is nearly 3% of the total geographical area of the country. It is bounded on the north by the Vindhyas, on the east by the Maikala range, on the south by the Satpuras and on the west by the Arabian Sea. The basin lies in the States of Madhya Pradesh, Gujarat and Maharashtra. The State-wise distribution of the drainage area is given below:

Drainage area (sq. km.)
Madhya Pradesh


Physiographically, the basin can be divided into hilly and plain regions. The hilly regions are in the upper part of the basin as well as in the lower middle reaches and are forested. The plain regions in between the hilly tracts and in the lower reaches are broad and fertile areas well suited for cultivation. The available information on soil survey conducted in the basin indicates that black soils are predominant in the basin. The coastal plains are composed of alluvial clays with a layer of black soil on top. The culturable area of the basin is about 5.9 M.ha which is 3% of the total culturable area of the basin.

River System

Narmada river rises near Amarkantak in Madhya Pradesh at an elevation of about 900 m and flows for about 1312 km before outfalling into the Arabian Sea through the Gulf of Cambay. Its principal tributaries are the Burhner, the Tawa, the Hiran, the Barna the Kolar and the Orsang. Click for basin map

Hydropower Potential

As per latest assesssment, the hydroelectric power potential of the basin is 1321 MW at 60% load factor.

CWC Network

The Central Water Commission maintains 19 gauge-discharge sites in the basin. Sediment observations are also taken at 12 of the above sites. The Central Water Commission also operates 3 flood forecasting stations in the basin.

Existing Organisations

The Narmada Control Authority is an interstate high level administrative authority, set up by the Govt, of India in 1980 for the purpose of securing compliance with the implementation of the decisions of the Narmada Water Disputes Tribunal by the basin States.
The Sardar Sarovar Construction Advisory Committee has been set up by the Government of India in 1980 for ensuring efficient, economical and early execution of the Sardar Sarovar project.
The Government of Madhya Pradesh has formed a Narmada valley Development Authority to look after the alround development of the portion of Narmada basin lying in Madhya Pradesh.