Reservoirs and Major Dams of India

This article explains about the list of major dams of India along with their reservoirs. This article also marks the locations of major dams of India on Indian map. This article also answers questions like highest dam of India, largest dam of India, largest reservoir associated with the dam, largest hydroelectric power plant associated with the dam etc.

Map of India showing Major Dams 

Reservoirs and Major Dams of India


i) Major Dams of India : Tehri Dam

Reservoirs and Major Dams of India

Tehri Dam

  • Type of Dam – Embankment, earth and rock fill
  • Height – 260 m
  • Length – 575 m
  • Width at top – 20 m
  • River – Bhagirathi
  • Volume of reservoir – 139.3 TmCF (1 TmCF is one thousand million cubic feet = 1000, 000,000 Cubic feet)
  • Installed capacity of Power plant – 2400 MW

Tehri dam is the tallest Dam in India and Asia both. It is a multipurpose dam built on Bhagirathi river near Tehri in Uttarakhand. This dam is owned by Public Sector Company – THDC (Tehri Hydro Development Corporation) India Ltd. The construction started in 1978 with the help of Russia and the first unit started in year 2006. Construction of additional 400 MW Koteshwar Dam project completed in year 2012 making total available capacity as 1400 MW.  Additional 1000 MW pumped storage plant construction is in progress which is expected to complete in 2018 and thus making total capacity of the plant as 2400 MW. When the third unit of additional 1000 MW will start the total capacity will become 2400 MW which will be India’s largest hydro-electric power plant.

ii) Major Dams of India : Koyna DamReservoirs and Major Dams of India

  • Type – Rubble concrete Dam
  • River – Koyna
  • Height – 103 m
  • Name of reservoir – Shivjisagar lake
  • Volume of reservoir –  100 TmCF
  • Installed capacity – 1960 MW.

Koyna dam is built across Koyna river in Koyna nagar, Satara district of Maharashtra. The main purpose of the dam is hydroelectricity and some irrigation in the near by areas. This is the second largest plant in terms of installed capacity. The dam is situated in the Sahyadri range of mountains near Mahabaleshwar. The lake formed in the catchment area is called Shivaji Sagar Lake. The dam developed some cracks after earthquakes of 1967 in Koyna nagar after which it was strengthened. With the total available installed capacity of 1960 MW, Koyna dam is presetly the largest power producing hydro-electric plant of India.

iii) Major Dams of India : Srisailam DamReservoirs and Major Dams of India

  • Type – Concrete gravity
  • Height – 145 m
  • Length – 512 m
  • River – Krishna
  • Name of reservoir – Srisailam Reservoir
  • Volume of reservoir – 216 TmCF
  • Installed capacity of Power plant – 1670 MW

Srisailam dam is constructed across Krishna river. Dam connects Telangana and Andhra Pradesh on either ends. One end of the dam is in Kurnool district of andhra Pradesh while other end is in Mahabubnagar of Telanga. The installed capacity of the Power plant is 1670 MW which makes it third largest hydroelectric power project of India.


iv) Major Dams of India : Nathpa Jhakri Dam

nathpa jhakri

  • Type of Dam – concrete gravity dam
  • Height – 62.5 m
  • Length – 185 m
  • River – Sutlej
  • Name of reservoir –
  • Volume of reservoir – 122.5 TmCF
  • Capacity – 1500 MW


It is a concrete gravity dam built across sutlej river. The primary purpose of the dam in hydroelectric power generation. Its construction started in 1993 and it completely started in 2004. It produces 1500 MW power through Francis turbines.


v) Major Dams of India : Sardar Sarovar Damsardar sarovar

  • Type of Dam – Gravity concrete type
  • Height – 163 m
  • Length – 1.2 Km
  • Volume of reservoir – 339.2 TmCF
  • River – Narmada
  • Installed Capacity of Power Plant – 1450 MW

This dam is also a gravity type dam which is built on Narmada river near Navagam of Gujarat. This dam remained in controversies from the directives issued from Supreme Court of India regarding its height and the affected catchment area. The project also includes Narmada canal which is used for irrigation of large draught prown regions of Gujarat.


vi) Major Dams of India : Bhakra DamBhakra-Dam

  • Type – Concrete gravity
  • Height – 226 m
  • Length – 520 m
  • Width at top – 9.1 m
  • Volume of reservoir – 325.2 TmCF
  • Installed Capacity of Power Plant – 1325 MW
  • Reservoir – Gobind Sagar

Bhakra dam is concrete gravity dam built across sutlej river in Bilaspur of Himachal Pradesh. This dam is the second tallest dam of India and Asia both. Its reservoir is called Gobind Sagar which is the third largest reservoir in terms of water storage capacity. Largest reservoir is of Indira Sagar Dam and second largest is of Nagarjuna Sagar Dam. Nangal Dam is separate dam on its downstream. They are commonly called as Bhakra Nangal Dam but both are separate.

vii) Major Dams of India : Indira Sagar Damindira sagar dam

  • Type – Gravity concrete type
  • Height – 92 m
  • Length – 653 m
  • River – Narmada
  • Name of reservoir – Indira Sagar
  • Volume of reservoir – 435.7 TmCF
  • Installed capacity of Power Plant- 1000 MW.

This dam in built across Narmada river in Khandwa district of Madhya Pradesh. It has a height of 92 m and length of 653 m. It is India’s biggest dam in terms of water storage capacity.


viii) Major Dams of India : Nagarjuna Sagar DamReservoirs and Major Dams of India

  • Height – 124 m
  • Type – Masonary Dam
  • River – Krishna
  • Name of reservoir – Nagarjuna Sagar
  • Volume of reservoir – 412.85 TmCF
  • Installed Capacity of the Power Plant – 816 MW

This is the world’s largest masonary dam built across Krishna river near Guntur district in Andhra Pradesh. The dam is 150 m tall and about 1.6 Km long. This is also one of the earliest multipurpose dam for both irrigation and hydro electric power generation. Its reservoir is the second largest in terms of water storage, first one being Indra Sagar Dam of Madhya Pradesh. It is the largest dam in terms of length which is 1.6 Km.

ix) Major Dams of India : Idukki Dam

Reservoirs and Major Dams of India

Idukki Dam

  • Type – arch, double curvature, cncrete
  • Height – 169 m
  • River – Periyar
  • Volume of reservoir – 70.48 TmCF
  • Installed Capacity of Power Plant- 780 MW.

It is arch curvature type dam which is built across Periyar river in Idukki district of Kerala. It is one of the highest arch type dams of Asia and the third highest arch type in world. The construction of dam started in 1969 and completed in 1973.

x) Major Dams of India : Hirakud DamReservoirs and Major Dams of India

  • Type – Composite dam
  • River – Mahanadi
  • Height – 61 m
  • Reservoir – Hirakud Reservoir
  • Volume of reservoir – 210.5 TmCF
  • Installed capacity of Power Plant – 347 MW.

It is built across Mahanadi river near Sambalpur in Odisha. It is the India’s first multipurpose project which started after India’s independence.  The construction of dam started in 1948 and completed in 1957. It is also the longest dam of India with length of about 4.8 Km.

List of major Dams of India in decreasing order of Installed Power Capacity –  

DamsReservoir StateRiverHeight (M)Length (M)Capacity (MW)
Tihri DamUttarakhandBhagirathi260 575 2400
Koyna DamShivajisagar LakeMaharashtraKoyna103 807 1960
Srisailam DamSrisailam reservoirTelangana/AndhraKrishna145 512 1670
Nathpa JhakriHimachal PradeshSutlej62.5 185 1500
Sardar SarovarGujaratNarmada163 1210 1450
Bhakra DamGovindsagar lakePunjab Sutlej226 520 1325
Indira Sagar DamIndira SagarMadhya Pradesh Narmada92 653 1000
Nagarjuna SagarNagarjuna sagarTelangana/Andhra Krishna124 1550 965
Idukki DamKerala Periyar169 366 780
Hirakud DamOdishaMahanadi61 4800347