• India is 5th globally for installed hydroelectric power capacity. As of 31 March 2020, India’s installed utility-scale hydroelectric capacity was 46,000 MW or 12.3% of its total utility power generation capacity. Additional smaller hydroelectric power units with a total capacity of 4,683 MW (1.3% of its total utility power generation capacity) have been installed.
  • The end of the 19th century saw the development of power in India. In 1897, electricity was commissioned in Darjeeling and in 1902, a Hydro Power station at Sivasamudram in Karnataka was commissioned.
    • The Koyna Hydroelectric Project is the largest completed hydroelectric power plant in India. It has a power capacity of 1960 MW.
    • The first hydroelectric power station was the Shivanasamudra hydroelectric power station.
    • Tehri Hydro Electric Power plant is the highest hydroelectric power project in the country, also Tehri Dam is the tallest one in India. Now, NTPC has taken over the project (Since 2019).
    • Srisailam Hydro Power Plant is the third largest working project in India.
    • Nathpa Jhakri Hydroelectric Power Plant is the biggest underground hydroelectric power project in the country.
    • Sardar Sarovar Dam is the world’s second-largest concrete dam.
  • Hydropower projects are classified as large and small hydro projects based on their sizes. Different countries have different size criteria to classify small hydropower project capacity ranging from 10MW to 50 MW.
  • In India, hydropower plants of 25MW or below capacity are classified as small hydro, which have further been classified into micro (100kW or below), mini (101kW-2MW), and small hydro (2-25MW) segments.
    • Hydro Power was being looked after by the Ministry of Power prior to 1989 mainly with the help of State Electricity Boards. In 1989, plant capacity up to 3MW and below was transferred to the Ministry of New and Renewable Energy (MNRE), and as such 63 MW aggregate installed capacity of 3MW and below hydro projects came within the jurisdiction of MNRE. 
    • Many initiatives were taken by the Ministry since then for the promotion of small hydro which included implementation of a UNDP-GEF assisted Technical Assistance project entitled “Optimizing Development of Small Hydro Resources in Hilly Regions of India”  and India-Renewable Resources Development Project with IDA credit line having interalia small hydro development component with a target of 100MW canal-based small hydro power projects through private sector participation.
    • Subsequently, plant capacity up to 25MW and below was entrusted with the MNRE in November 1999.
  • The estimated potential of 21135.37 MW from 7135 sites for power generation in the country from small/mini hydel projects is assessed by the Alternate Hydro Energy Centre (AHEC) of IIT Roorkee in its Small Hydro Database of July 2016.
  • The hilly States of India mainly Arunachal Pradesh, Himachal Pradesh, Jammu & Kashmir and Uttarakhand, and constitute around half of this potential.  Other potential States are Maharashtra, Chhattisgarh, Karnataka, and Kerala.
Small Hydro power energy
Small Hydro Energy

List of Hydroelectric Power Plants in India

StatesRiverHydroelectric Power Plant
Andhra PradeshKrishnaNagarjunasagar Hydro Electric Power plant
Andhra PradeshKrishnaSrisailam Hydro Electric Power plant
Andhra Pradesh, OrissaMachkundMachkund Hydro Electric Power plant
GujaratNarmadaSardar Sarovar Hydro Electric Power plant
GujaratTapi RiverUkai Dam
Himachal PradeshBairaBaira-Siul Hydroelectric Power plant
Himachal PradeshSutlejBhakra Nangal Hydroelectric Power plant
Himachal PradeshBeasDehar Hydroelectric Power plant
Himachal PradeshSutlejNathpa Jhakri Hydroelectric Power plant
Jammu and KashmirChenabSalal Hydro Electric Power plant
Jammu and KashmirJhelumUri Hydro Electric Power plant
JharkhandSubarnarekhaSubarnarekha Hydroelectric Power plant
JharkhandBarakar RiverMaithon Hydel Power Station
KarnatakaKalinadiKalinadi Hydro Electric Power plant
KarnatakaSharavathiSharavathi Hydroelectric Power plant
KarnatakaKaveriShivanasamudra Hydroelectric Power plant
KeralaPeriyarIdukki Hydro Electric Power plant
Madhya PradeshSoneBansagar Hydroelectric Power plant
Madhya PradeshNarmadaIndira Sagar Hydro Electric Power plant
Madhya Pradesh, Uttar PradeshRihandRihand Hydroelectric Power plant
Madhya PradeshSindh RiverMadikheda Dam
Madhya PradeshNarmada RiverBargi Dam
MaharashtraKoynaKoyna Hydroelectric Power plant
MaharashtraBhima RiverUjjani Dam, also known as Bhima Dam
MaharashtraGodavari RiverJayakwadi Dam
MaharashtraMula RiverMulshi Dam
ManipurLeimtakLoktak Hydro Electric Power plant
OdishaSileruBalimela Hydro Electric Power plant
OdishaMahanadiHirakud Hydro Electric Power plant
OdishaIndravati RiverIndravati Dam
SikkimRangitRangit Hydroelectric Power plant
SikkimTeestaTeesta Hydro Electric Power plant
UttarakhandBhagirathiTehri Hydro Electric Power plant
Himachal PradeshBaspaBaspa-II Hydro Electric Power plant
Himachal PradeshSatlujNathpa Jhakri Hydro Electric Power Plant
Himachal PradeshBeasPandoh Dam
Himachal PradeshRaviChamera-I
Himachal PradeshRaviChamera-II
Himachal PradeshBeasPong
Jammu and KashmirChenabDulhasti
Uttar PradeshRihand/RenukaObra Hydroelectric Power Plant
Arunachal PradeshSubansiri RiverLower Subansiri Hydroelectric Power Project
MeghalayaUmiam RiverUmiam-Umtru Hydroelectric Power Project
Hydroelectric Power Plants in India
Hydroelectric Power Plants in India

Baira Siul Power Station

  • Baira Siul Power Station is a major step towards harnessing the hydroelectric potential in Himachal Pradesh.
  • It envisages utilization of the combined inflow of three tributaries of the Ravi river, namely Baira, Siul and Bhaledh for generation of power on a run-of-the-river basis.
  • The installed capacity is 180 MW (3 x 60 MW). The annual designed energy from the project is 779.28 MU’s in a 90% dependable year with 95% availability of installed capacity.
  • The project headquarter is at Surangani.

Machkund Hydro Electric Power plant

  • Machkund Hydroelectric Project is located in the Machkund Dam of Koraput district in Odisha.
  • The first unit of the power project is commissioned in 1959 and the total installed capacity of the power plant is 120 MWe. The hydroelectric project status of the power plant is Operational.
  • Jalaput Dam
    • The Jalaput Dam is a hydroelectric dam built on the Machkund River, a tributary of the Godavari River.

Balimela Hydro Electric Power plant

  • Balimela Hydroelectric Project is erected in the Sileru River (a tributary of the Godavari river) of Balimela Town in the Malkangiri District of Odisha.
  • Balimela Dam is in Malkangiri District, which is 35 kms, from the east of Malkangiri.
  • Balimela Dam is a joint project of the Odisha and Andhra Pradesh Governments and the inflow into Balimela Reservoir is shared between the two States on a 50:50 basis.

Rangit Hydroelectric Power plant

  • Rangit Power Station is located in the State of Sikkim having an Installed Capacity of 60 MW (3×20 MW).
  • It uses the water of river Rangit for the generation of Power.
  • It is a run-of-the-river power project.
  • The beneficiary states of this power station are Sikkim, West Bengal, Orissa, Bihar, Jharkhand, and Damodar Valley Corporation.

Obra Hydroelectric Power Plant

  • Obra Hydroelectric Power Plant is erected in the Obra village of Sonbhadra district in Uttar Pradesh.
  • The water source for the generation of power in the plant is Rihand/Renuka River.
  • Dam: Obra Dam
  • Location of Dam: upstream of confluence of Rihand/Renuka river with Son river
  • The power plant is owned by the Uttar Pradesh State Government and the operator of the plant is Uttar Pradesh Jal Vidyut Nigam Limited. The Beneficiary States of the power project are Uttar Pradesh and its nearby states.

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Obra dam mapping is wrong. It’s in sonebhadra, uttar pradesh.