The Government of India, Ministry of Water Resources had constituted a Task Force on Interlinking of Rivers in December, 2002 to suggest modalities for arriving at speedy consensus amongst the States for sharing and transfer of surplus water to deficit areas; providing guidance on norms of appraisal of individual projects in respect of economic viability, socio-economic impacts, environmental impacts and preparation of resettlement plans; prioritization of different project components for preparation of Detailed Project Reports and their implementation, a suitable organizational structure for implementing the project and modalities for project funding.
The Task Force on Interlinking of Rivers for which NWDA was providing secretarial services, had held fifteen meetings during its tenure period from 2002-04.
Work completed by the task force on Interlinking of Rivers:
ø Action Plan-I, giving an outline of the time schedules for the completion of the feasibility studies, detailed project reports, estimated costs, implementation schedule, concrete benefits and advantages of the project, etc. submitted on 30th April, 2003.
ø Action Plan-II, giving alternative options for funding and execution of the project as also the suggested methods for cost recovery submitted on 16th April, 2004.
ø The Chairman, Task Force individually met Chief Ministers of various States for arriving at consensus.
ø Task Force has got prepared Term of Reference (TOR) for preparation of Detailed Project Reports (DPR)
While prioritizing the different project components for preparation of Detailed Project Reports and implementation, Task Force has suggested that the Peninsular links are the right component to begin with.
Since the TF-ILR has completed its mandated task, after submitting the reports (Action Plan I&II) to the Government, it was decided to wound up the Task Force. Accordingly, the Task Force has been wound up with effect from 31.12.2004 and a Special Cell on ILR has been created under the MOWR to look after residual work of Task Force and for taking further action. A committee of Environmentalists, Social Scientists and other Experts on Interlinking of Rivers which will be involved in the consultative process, has been constituted by MOWR in December, 2004.