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National Hydrology Project

National Hydrology Project has been approved by the cabinet on 06.04.2016 as a World Bank supported Central Sector Scheme with a total outlay of Rs.3679.7674 crore [Rs. 3,640 crore for National Hydrology Project (NHP) and Rs.39.7674 crore for establishment of National Water informatics Centre (NWIC) as a repository of nation-wide water resources data].

NWIC has been established as a subordinate office of DoWR, RD & GR in March 2018.

Project Development Objective:

The proposed Project Development Objective (PDO) is to improve the extent, quality, and accessibility of water resources information and to strengthen the capacity of targeted water resources management institutions in India.

Project Highlight:

  • Central Sector Scheme, with 100% grant to the States
  • Budget Outlay: about Rs3,680 Crore, with World Bank Assistance to the tune USD 160 million
  • Timeline: 8 years from 2016-17 to 2023-24
  • Scale: Pan India
  • Lead Agency: DoWR, RD & GR, MoJS
  • Implementing Agencies: 48 (including 12 from Central Government and 36 from States)
  • Loan agreement with World Bank has been signed on 18-4-2017.

Project Concept:

  1. Modernizing Monitoring network: The project will establish& strengthen monitoring networks in project states, with a focus on deploying new sensors, data storage, and telemetry technologies across the whole country, to establish comprehensive, modern, automated, real-time monitoring systems for surface water and ground water.
  2. Transforming Knowledge Access: The project will build on the dramatic advances in cloud computing, internet, mobile devices, social media and other communication tools to modernize access to and visualization of customized water information by different stakeholders.
  3. Enhancing Analytical Tools: The project will develop and demonstrate tools for water resources assessment, hydro logic and flood inundation forecasting, water infrastructure operations, ground water modelling, and river basin and investment planning.
  4. Modernizing Institutions: The project will complement technology investments with investments in people and institutional capacity. Support will be provided for developing centers of expertise, innovative learning approaches, collaboration with academia and research institutes, and outreach programs. Office and equipment will be modernized to streamline work flows to effectively leverage the technology investments.


Project Components:

 A. Water Resources Monitoring Systems: This component supports the establishment/modernization of new and existing hydro met monitoring systems primarily for real time data transmission pertaining to meteorology, stream flow, ground water, water quality and water storage measurements, and establishment of hydro-informatics centres. This component will be implemented by states/UTs with the support of core central agencies. The major activities include:

    1. establishment of real time data acquisition hydro met networks;

    2. establishment of Supervisory Control and Data Acquisition (SCADA) systems for water infrastructure; and

    3.  establishment of hydro-informatics centers.

 B. Water Resources Information Systems: Component B supports the strengthening of national and sub-national water information centres with web-enabled WRISs through standardization of databases and products from various data sources/departments and make comprehensive, timely, and integrated water resources information available to decision makers for effective planning, decision making, and operations.

The sources of data/information include the real-time data acquisition networks and centres under Component A, remote sensing data, and topographical maps and knowledge products developed under Component C. Emphasis will be on improving quality of and access to water information and on expanding public access beyond data to analytical results (trends, water balance, and so on) as well as to contribute to evidence based operational and investment plans. The project will support development or strengthening of centres for web-based WRIS at the central, regional, river basin, and state/UT levels. Some of the key activities under this component are:

    1. Strengthening of India Water Resources Information System (WRIS); and

    2. Regional /State Water Resources Information System.

 C. Water Resources Operations and Planning Systems: This component supports the development of interactive analytical tools and decision support platform that would integrate database, models and scenario manager for hydrological flood forecasting, integrated reservoir operations, and water resources accounting for improved operation, planning, and management of both surface water and ground water, based on basin approach. The component will provide interactive systems to analyze the impacts of alternative management scenarios and generate knowledge products using real-time data under Component B. Component C has three subcomponents:

    1. Development of analytical tools and decision-support platform (river basin modelling, stream flow forecasting and reservoir operation systems, and irrigation design and operations);

    2. Purpose driven support; and

    3. Piloting innovative knowledge products. 

 D. Institutional Capacity Enhancement: Component D aims to build capacity for knowledge-based water resources management. It will support subcomponents in the establishment of (i) water resources knowledge centres, (ii) professional development, (iii) project management, and (iv) operational support.

The project will develop partnerships with national and international institutes, establish communities of practice, internships and visiting expert programs, customized training and workshops for knowledge exchange and professional networking. Outreach and awareness programmes are an integral part of the project and will showcase the NHP to a broad audience, both for specific target audiences such as local communities in irrigated or flood prone areas and for the public at large.



The project has two groups of direct beneficiaries:

 1. central and state implementing agencies (IAs) responsible for surface water and/or ground water planning and management, including river basin organizations (RBOs) and

 2. users of the WRIS across various sectors and around the world. The ultimate beneficiaries will be the selected farm communities which benefited from pilot projects for water management; rural and urban water and power users; populations affected by floods and  droughts, especially poor rural people, and farm families who may benefit from improved irrigation water supply and management; stakeholders across the energy, inland waterways, environment, and agriculture ministries; research and educational institutions; students and researchers; and non-governmental organizations, civil society organizations, and the private sector.