Vijayanagara Channel (VNC) System is a run-of-the-river irrigation channel system built during the Vijayanagara Empire more than 600 years ago. Originally consisting of 19 channels, one channel (Rampura) caters to the irrigation needs of the neighboring state of Andhra Pradesh. Among the rest 18 channels that serve the command area in Karnataka, Bennur Channel is in ruins, while Koregal Channel command receives water from the Tungabhadra Left Bank Channel. The VNC was constructed within the Tungabhadra basin in the reach starting from the Tungabhadra reservoir in Koppal District. Within the State, the VNC system spread across 3 districts, namely, Bellary, Raichur and Koppal and lies between latitude 14°30' to 16°34' N and longitude 75°40' to 77°35' E.

The modernization (rehabilitation) program under Karnataka Integrated and Sustainable Water Resources Management Investment Program (KISWRMIP) assisted by Asian Development Bank (ADB) comprises modernization (rehabilitation) of three Projects-Gondi, VNC and TLBC initially under two tranches. The Gondi modernization under Project 1 has begun in July 2015 and has been completed by 31 December 2019. The Tranche 2 comprises modernization (rehabilitation) of Vijayanagara Channels. Modernization and total automation of Tungabhadra Left Bank Canal is to be taken up as a separate project. The multi-tranche facility for the two tranches will be closing in the year 2024.

There are three outputs for each of these projects including VNC:

  • Output 1: State and Basin Institutions Strengthened for IWRM;
  • Output 2: Irrigation System Infrastructure and Management Modernized, and
  • Output 3: Project and Management Systems Operational.

VNC modernization aims at improving water use efficiency in the Culturable Command Area (CCA) of 11,154 ha. Along with modernization (rehabilitation) works, installation of flow measurement and telemetry, command area development works, strengthening asset management and main system, Operation & Maintenance (O&M), and institutional strengthening and capacity building of WUCS will be taken up.

The scope of VNC modernization includes rehabilitation of 12 anicuts, 215.31 km of canal sections and other appurtenant structures. The program aims at enhancing water security through modernization of existing irrigation projects/schemes, improved water resources management and other associated infrastructure activities in select river basins.

Salient features of the Vijayanagara Channels

S. No. Name of the Channel Length of Channel (km) Crop area (ha) Offtake
Right Bank of Tungabhadra River
1 Raya Channel 27.74 2,855 Tungabhadra Dam
2 Basavanna Channel 16.50 1,447 Tungabhadra Dam
3 Bella Channel 5.50 741 Hosur Anicut
4 Kalaghatta Channel 7.020 349 Drainage channel
5 Turtha Channel 18.69 1,171 Turtha anicut
6 Ramasagar Channel 15.50 1,024 Ramasagar Anicut
7 Kampli Channel 23.550 894 Kampli Anicut
8 Belagodahala 11.220 328 Drainage channel
9 Deshnur Channel 9.03 815 Deshnur Anicut
10 Siruguppa Channel 10.85 1,344 Sirguppa Anicut
Left Bank of Tungabhadra River
11 Hulugi Channel 10.69 419 Hulugi anicut
12 Shivapura Channel 6.54 717 Shivapura anicut
13 Anegundi Channel 19.44 1,359 Sanapur anicut
14 Gangavathi upper Channel 9.00 1,363 Upper Gangavathi anicut
15 Gangavathi lower Channel 9.54 1,141 Lower Gangavathi anicut
16 Bichal Channel 14.50 276 Jukur Anicut
Total 16,241
Vijayanagara Channels Feasibility Study Reports

Vol 2a: Environmental Impact Assessment

Vol 2b: Rapid Biodiversity Assessment

Vol 2c: Tree Survey Report

Vol 2d: Environmental Assessment Review Framework

Volume 3a: Poverty and Social Assessment

Volume 3b: Social Safeguard Due Diligence Report

Volume 3b: SDDR-Annex-2 Sample Stripmap

Volume 3c: Resettlement Framework

Volume 3d: Summary Poverty Reduction and Social Strategy

Volume 4: Economic and Financial Analysis