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Tehri Dam

Located on the shores of Bhagirathi River, close to Tehri in Uttarakhand, Tehri Dam is a multi-purpose rock and an earth fill embankment in India. It is also one of the tallest dams in the world. Of all the projects owned by THDC Limited, Tehri Dam is most important one. It was during 2006, Phase 1 of Tehri Dam was constructed. The dam has the capacity to produce 1000MW of hydroelectricity and is the main source of water supply for irrigation and other municipal needs. Currently, the capacity of the dam that can hold up to 1000MW is under progress.


Tehri Dam located on the banks of Bhagirathi River. This River is the main branch of Ganges River.


The pilot study of the Tehri Dam was completed during 1961. The main design of the dam project was completed during 1972 with a capacity to produce 600MW of hydroelectricity. The pilot study was completed long back, however, construction for the same began in 1978 only due to problems in the social and financial environments. During 1986, the project received enough technical and financial support from USSR; however due to political instability, this support could not be used in the proper way. When India assumed control over the project, it was supervised by Uttar Pradesh’s Irrigation Department.

During 1988, the management of the dam came under the control of Tehri Hydro Development Corporation. Funding for the affairs of the dam was contributed by the Central Government (75%) and the State Government (25%). The entire costs of irrigation were taken over by the state government of Uttar Pradesh. It was during 1990, that the design of the project was changed. Completion of the first phase was done during 2006, while the completion of the second phase of Koteshwar dam project was completed during 2012. The storage plant with pumping facilities is due to get over by February 2016.


The Tehri Dam rock has a height of 855 feet and belongs to the earth-fill embankment category. The crest of the dam is 20 m wide and the dam is about 575 m in length. The width of the base of the dam is about 1128 m. The reservoir of the dam stretches up to 5 cubic km. The surface area stretches for 52 sq.km. At the time of installation, the capacity of the dam was around 1000MW. The extra pumped storage capacity of Tehri Dam is expected to be another 1000MW. This pumped storage capacity is expected to set up in the second phase of Koteshwar Dam project.

The two main parts of Tehri Hydropower Complex are the Tehri Dam and the Tehri Pumped Storage Hydroelectric Power Plant. The Koteshwar Dam project that has a capacity of 400MW currently is also included in this. The irrigation facilities of this dam will benefit up to 270000 hectares of land. The proposed area to which h the irrigation is expected to expand is around 600000 hectares of land. The corporate areas of Delhi, Uttar Pradesh and Uttarakhand are expected to receive 270 million imperial gallons of drinking water per day due to this dam. The estimated cost of this project is expected to reach around 1 billion USD.

Electricity Generation

Currently, the Tehri Dam produces 1000MW of hydroelectricity. The pumped storage plant that is under progress is expected to produce another 1000MW. Another 400MW production from the Koteshwar Dam downstream project is also part of the Tehri Hydropower Complex.


  • The eventual production capacity is around 2000MW, with 1000 MW plant already in use and the extra 1000MW capacity project is under pipeline.
  • The irrigation facilities of this dam are expected to benefit around 270000 hectares of land.
  • Irrigation facilities for around 600000 hectares of land are set to undergo stabilization.
  • Corporate and industrial areas of Delhi, Uttarakhand and Uttar Pradesh all set to receive 270 million gallons of drinking water every day.

Best Time to Visit

During summers, the temperatures at Tehri Dam range in between 7 and 35 degrees Celsius.  Winters are usually spine-chilling with temperatures going below zero degrees Celsius. Since there are many tall peaks in Tehri, there are high chances of snowfall expected here during winters. However, if you like extremely cold climates you will enjoy this place during winters also. Tehri Dam is one of those places that can be enjoyed anytime during the year.

How to Reach

By Bus

All the districts in Uttarakhand and other north Indian states are well connected to Tehri through buses. You can hop on to one any of the luxury, deluxe and normal buses to Tehri from ISBT Kashmir Gate. This is also easily and frequently connected with places like Mussoorie, Nainital, Rishikesh, Hardwar, Uttarkashi, Srinagar, Dehradun and Devprayag.

By Train

Tehri Garhwal railway station in Rishikesh is the nearest railway station to Tehri. Trains to Rishikesh are available from all the major cities in India. From the railway station, one can easily get motorbikes, cabs and taxis to Tehri Garhwal.

By Air

Located at a distance of 91km from Tehri, Jolly Grant Airport is the nearest airport to this place. From here, there are many taxis that take you to Tehri.  Also, there are daily flights from here to Delhi.

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