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World Bank Group Timeline

June 18, 1992

Independent Review of the Sardar Sarovar Project published

In response to major criticism of the Indian Sardar Sarovar dam project in the areas of resettlement and environment, the World Bank Group requests an independent review. The resulting report, known as the Morse Study, finds that both the Indian government and the World Bank Group are responsible for the project’s failures. At the request of the Indian government, the Bank Group will cancel the remainder of the loan in 1993.

Resource Gallery

Memorandum reporting on the Morse Commission and Environmental Defense Fund press conferences

June 19, 1992
The memorandum contains a thorough report, including quotations, from the press conference held in conjunction with the release of the Morse report (1662724).

Interview with Thomas Ambrose Blinkhorn

Interview date: June 16-18, 2008
Blinkhorn discusses the irrigation project, its external review, and subsequent abandonment on pages 50-65.

Correspondence from President Preston to Thomas R. Berger

Sept. 12, 1991
President Preston appoints Berger as deputy chairman of the independent review team. Berger was formerly a Canadian politician and British Columbia Supreme Court judge (1780270).

Correspondence from the Independent Review chairs to President Preston

Oct. 13, 1992
The letter, which follows the World Bank Group's release of its response to the Morse report, expresses frustration at the Bank's mischaracterization of the Independent Review's findings (1662724).

Resettlement and Development: The Bankwide Review of Projects Involving Involuntary Resettlement, 1986-1993

Document date: March 31, 1996
The comprehensive study "[aims] at assessing consistency between policy and operations."

India Irrigation Project - Narmada River Development (Gujarat) Sardar Sarovar Dam and Power Project

P009829: Approved: Mar.7, 1985
The project is part of an inter-state program to develop multipurpose hydropower, irrigation dams on the Narmada River, and irrigation canal networks thereof.

Construction of the Sardar Sarovar Dam

December 1991
The Sardar Sarovar Dam is a gravity dam on the Narmada river near Navagam, Gujarat in India (1662724; Credit The World Bank).

Memorandum summarizing the Morse report

May 5, 1992
The summary of the draft Morse report for President Preston describes the report's general approach, its primary assertions, and a proposed response from the World Bank Group (1662724).

The Sardar Sarovar Dam

December 1991
The project is part of a development scheme to increase irrigation and produce hydroelectricity (1662724; Credit: The World Bank).