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About Us

Indian Water Resources Society (IWRS) was founded in 1980 as a society registered under the Societies Registration Act. IWRS Registered office is located in the Water Resources Development Training Center, I.I.T. Roorkee. In addition, IWRS has local centers in most of the major cities.

Subject to approval by the executive committee, membership of IWRS is open to any person who is interested in water sector. One doesn't have to be an engineer to be a member of IWRS. A truly democratic institution, IWRS accepts even those as members who are known to hold aviewcontrary to IWRS institutional view.

At the last count, IWRS has about 7408 individual members; 335 fellows; and 48 institutional members.


The main objective of IWRS is advancement of knowledge in technical and policy aspects of water resources development and management. IWRS serves as a platform for free and frank discussions amongst those concerned with water related issues. Although IWRS-DC is an NGO, we believe that co-operation with the Government agencies, and not confrontation, is the key to making a difference in the water resources sector.

Water Sector - Key Concerns

  • Safe Drinking Water and Basic Sanitation for All
  • Irrigation for Food Secburity
  • Sustainable use of Ground Water
  • Improving Water Quality in Rivers
  • Preventing Pollution of Aquifers
  • Managing Non-point Source Pollution
  • Conflict Resolution

Conflict Resolution

  • Jurisdictional Conflict - Interstate, International
  • Social Conflict – Urban vs. Rural, Rich vs. Poor
  • Sectoral Conflict – Irrigation vs. Other Uses
  • Riparian Conflict – Upper Riparian vs. Lower Riparian
  • Objective Conflict – Water Development vs. Environment
  • Ushering in New Thinking in Water Sector
  • Water Literacy for All
  • Countering Misinformation Campaign


Acting as a think-tank, IWRS organizes seminars, discussions and public lectures to discuss technology issues, policy issues, generate new ideas, and take forward the strategic planning in water sector.


Recent rise in indiscriminate activism, and the misinformation campaign unleashed by the activists, has forced IWRS to takeup the issues with activists and NGOs in a debate mode, and speak up in defense of the scientific, and correct position. When in doubt about some seemingly controversial issue, people refer to IWRS publications and website, to know the correct position.


To disseminate the knowledge, IWRS regularly brings out publications . These include a Journal to address the technical issues; a News Letter to address policy issues and news; and a Theme Paper on 22 March every year. This is a well researched document on a specific topic, and serves as a valuable reference material. In addition to these regular publications, IWRS also brings out every year several monographs on various topics. All publications 2003 onwards are available at the IWRS website. Past publications are also being converted to electronic format, and will be added to the website. Print issues are available only to members. See Publications page for more details. Click here to add your email address to the IWRS database, to receive IWRS publications in your mailbox.

Water Resources Day

On 22 March, the IWRS, through its Delhi Center, organizes the function for the World Water Day, which also serves as the inaugural function for the Water Resources Day. This function is organized at a public place and is open to all.

Kanwar Sain Memorial Lecture

Padmabhushan Dr. Kanwar Sain was one of the most illustrious water resources engineers of modern India. A graduate of Thompson Engineering college of Roorkee , now Roorkee IIT, he worked for almost 40 years in the water sector and rose to become Chairman of the CW&PC. He was associated with all the major projects taken up during this era but is most remembered for his work on the IGNP and Mekong International River Commission in Thailand as a UN Expert. During his long an illustrious career he was decorated with several honours, most notable amongst them the O.B.E. and the Padma Bhushan. In his memory, IWRS-DC organizes a "Kanwar Sain Memorial Lecture" every year. The lectures delivered over the years also make a rich repertoire of analysis and thought provoking ideas.

A special feature of Kanwar Sain Memorial lectures is, IWRS frequently invites a speaker who is not a water engineer and represents, so to say, the "other side". IWRS is perhaps the only NGO that provides their own platform for the contrary view also.