New Delhi: Inland Waterways Authority of India (IWAI) Chairman Sanjay Bandopadhyaya on Wednesday said that efforts are being made to develop waterways with the help of the private sector.
To promote water transport in the country, 111 inland waterways have been declared as National Waterways (NWs) under the National Waterways Act, 20l6.
Speaking at the 'Maritime Public Private Partnership Conclave 2022, Bandopadhyaya said, "We have given assured depth contract at three stretches and more contracts are on bids."
Waterways around Kolkata are also being developed, he said, adding that the city is connected to even far-flung north-eastern region and other parts of the country through waterways and rivers.
Central government through IWAI, an autonomous organisation under the ministry of ports, shipping and waterways, regulates the development of inland waterways for shipping and navigation.
The infrastructure developed on NWs like channels with navigational facilities and terminals/jetties may also be used by ferry/tourist vessels.
Also, financial assistance for the construction of passenger jetties and infrastructure facilities on waterways in Karnataka has been approved under Sagarmala scheme.
Cargo movement of 108.79 million metric tonnes (MMT) by inland water transport through NWs has been recorded during 2021-22.