The Narmada Dam Project, known officially as the Sardar Sarovar Project (SSP), is a project involving the construction of a series of large hydroelectric dams on the Narmada River in India. The project was first conceived of in the 1940s by the country's first prime minister, Jawaharlal Nehru. The project only took form in 1979 as part of a development scheme to increase irrigation and produce hydroelectricity. The Narmada dam is India's most controversial dam project and its environmental impact and net costs and benefits are widely debated. The Narmada Dam has been the center of controversy and protest since the late 1980s.
Local protests taking the form of a genuine peoples movement, known as the Narmada Bachao Andolan (Save Narmada Movement) have been led by Medha Patkar. The World Bank was a funder of the SSP, but withdrew after an independent review in 1990. Indian writer Arundhati Roy has protested the Narmada Dam project.
- Jacques Leslie, Deep Water: The Epic Struggle over Dams, Displaced People, and the Enviornment, Farrar, Straus and Giroux (2005), hardcover, 252 pages, ISBN 0374281726
- Friends of the River Narmada: The Struggle Continues
- Drowned Out documentary (2002) follows Narmada Dam struggle
- Narmada Dam protests: Villagers stay put, defying government officials