For instance, out of the 111 identified National Waterways, 106 were conceived in 2016 alone. An assertive Nutan Guha Biswas, Chairperson, Inland Waterways Authority of India (IWAI) is confident that the statutory agency will continue to exceed its performance in 2018.
The Inland Waterways Authority of India (IWAI) was set up in 1986. Since then till 2008, only five waterways could be declared as National Waterways. Work could be started on only three of them: National Waterway or NW-1 that is the Ganga National Waterway, NW-2 that is the Brahmaputra Waterway and NW-3 comprising the backwaters of Kerala.
The Government is considering a proposal to set up an Integrated National Waterways Transport Grid (INWTG) which covers mainly five National Waterways. The INWTG includes development of the National Waterways with at least 2.5 meter Least Available Depth (LAD), upgrading/ setting up of priority terminals, establishing road connectivity, wherever feasible, rail and port connectivity.
Coastal shipping and inland waterways transportation (IWT), the two significant modes of domestic water transportation, both provide fuel and cost savings over road and rail transport. Water as a mode of transportation holds significant importance in an economy
Union Shipping Minister GK Vasan launched the bulk movement of coal through the national waterways recently. The shipment included the 2,100 DWT coal barges of Jindal ITF Ltd on the Ganga-Bhagirathi-Hooghly River System - National Waterways -1.