How have multi-purpose projects and large dams been the cause of many new social movements?
- Narmada Bachao Andolan and the Tehri Dam Andolan, etc., were the movements to resist large-scale displacement of local communities. Local people often had to give up their land, livelihood and their control over resources for the greater good of the nation.
- Irrigation has changed the cropping pattern from shifting to commercial crops. It is responsible for salinisation of the soil. At the same time, it has its social impact by increasing the social gap between the rich landowners and the landless poor.
- Dams also created conflicts between people wanting different uses and benefits from the same water resource. In Gujarat, the Sabarmati basin farmers were agitated over the priority given to water supply in urban areas, particularly during droughts.
- Interstate water disputes are also common with regard to sharing the costs and benefits of the multi-purpose projects. For e.g., Krishna-Godavari dispute, is due to the objections raised by Karnataka and Andhra Pradesh governments regarding the diversion of more water at Koyna by the Maharashtra government for a multi-purpose project.