Proposal for Dam Safety Bill, 2018 Approved (Important) (Download PDF)


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Union Cabinet approved proposal for introduction of Dam Safety Bill, 2018 in Parliament on 13th June, 2018 after wide consultation w/leading Indian experts & international experts.

Image of Proposal for Dam Safety Bill, 2018

Image of Proposal for Dam Safety Bill, 2018

Image of Proposal for Dam Safety Bill, 2018

Importance of Bill

  • Bill will enable all states & UTs of India to adopt uniform dam safety procedures that will ensure safety of dams & will safeguard their benefits.
  • Uniformity will help in protecting human life, livestock & property.

Key Facts of Bill

  • Bill will provide for proper surveillance, inspection, operation & maintenance of all specified dams in country to ensure their safe functioning.

  • It will provide for constitution of National Committee on Dam Safety that will evolve dam safety policies & recommend necessary regulations as required for purpose.

  • It will provide for constitution of State Committee on Dam Safety by state government.

  • It will enable establishment of National Dam Safety Authority as regulatory body, which will discharge functions to implement policy, guidelines & standards for dam safety in country.


  • Bill will address all issues concerning dam safety including regular inspection of dams, emergency action plan, comprehensive dam safety review, adequate repair & maintenance funds for dam safety & instrumentation & safety manuals.
  • Under bill’s provisions, responsibility of ensuring dam safety will lay on dam owner.
  • Bill will provide for penal provisions for commission & omission of certain acts.

National Dam Safety Authority

  • National authority will be required to maintain contact w/state dam safety organisations & owners of dams for standardisation of dam safety-related data & practices.

  • It will provide technical & managerial assistance to states & state dam safety organizations.

  • It will help maintain national level database of all dams in country & records of major dam failures.

  • It will be required to examine cause of any major dam failure.

  • Authority will publish & update standard guidelines & check-lists for routine inspection & detailed investigations of dams & appurtenances.

  • It will accord recognition or accreditations to organisations that can be entrusted w/works of investigation, design or construction of new dams.

  • It will look into unresolved points of issue b/w state dam safety organisation of 2 states, or b/w state dam safety organisation of state & owner of dam in that state, for proper solution.

  • In cases where dams of one state fall under territory of another state, national authority will perform role of state dam safety organisation thereby eliminating potential causes for inter-state conflicts.

State Committee on Dam Safety

  • Committee will ensure proper surveillance, inspection, operation & maintenance of all specified dams in that state & ensure their safe functioning.
  • State Dam Safety Organisation”, will be manned by officers from field of dam safety, preferably from areas of dam-designs, hydro-mechanical engineering, hydrology, geo-technical investigation, instrumentation & dam-rehabilitation.

Background on Dam Safety Issues

  • There are over 5200 large dams & thousands of medium & small dams in India. Some 450 more are under construction currently.
  • Due to lack of legal & institutional architecture for dam safety in India, dam safety is issue of concern.
  • Unsafe dams are potential hazards, as dam break may cause huge disaster, leading to massive loss of life & property.

- Published/Last Modified on: August 28, 2018

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