Ujjani Dam, also known as Bhima Dam or Bhima Irrigation Project, on the Bhima River, a tributary of the Krishna River, is an earthfill cum Masonry gravity dam located near Ujjani village of Madha Taluk in Solapur district of the state of Maharashtra in India.
The Bhima River, which originates in Bhimashankar of the Western Ghats, and forms the Bhima Valley with its tributary rivers and streams, has twenty-two dams built on it of which the Ujjani Dam is the terminal dam on the river and is the largest in the valley that intercepts a catchment area of 14,858 km2 (5,737 sq mi) (which includes a free catchment of 9,766 km2 (3,771 sq mi)). The construction of the dam project including the canal system on both banks was started in 1969 at an initial estimated cost of Rs 400 million and when completed in June 1980 the cost incurred was of the order of Rs 3295.85 million.
The reservoir created by the 56.4 m (185 ft) high earth cum concrete gravity dam on the Bhima River has a gross storage capacity of 3.320 km3 (0.797 cu mi). The annual utilization is 2.410 km3 (0.578 cu mi). The project provides multipurpose benefits of irrigation, hydroelectric power, drinking and industrial water supply and fisheries development. The irrigation supplies benefit 500 km2 (190 sq mi) of agricultural land, particularly in the Solapur district. Water supplied from the reservoir to irrigate agricultural areas primarily aims to reduce incidence of famines and scarcity during drought conditions. The reservoir operation also lessens threat due floods to cities such as Pandharpur (an important religious pilgrimage centre) for the Hindus. As a result of irrigation facilities, some of the important crops grown under irrigated conditions are sugarcane, wheat, millet and cotton.
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