Study on Halali Dam

— by Pranjal K, July 26 2021 —


The state of Madhya Pradesh is richly gifted with multiple inland water resources. There are both natural and artificial water bodies which are sources of freshwater. One of the main reservoirs of M.P. is the Halali Reservoir, also known as Samrat Ashok Sagar Project, situated around 40 kms from the city of Bhopal. It is located in both Raisen and Vidisha districts, between 23° 30´ N and 77° 30´ E [1]. The reservoir is perennial in nature, used for irrigation and is fed by the Halali River. It originates near Bhopal and travels over 38km and joins the river Betwa near Vidisha. It is also referred to as Bais river in its later part.

The Halali dam has a dark history. It is believed that Dost Mohammad Khan, the founder of the city of Bhopal, invited local Rajput rulers to the banks of the Halali river and deceitfully murdered them. When the river ran red with blood of the slayed, it was named ‘Halali’ [2]. Today the dam is a critical fresh water source and also serves the purpose of recreation for nearby towns and cities.

The article aims to investigate the physicochemical properties of Halali reservoir and suggest possible scientific solutions.

Physicochemical Properties

Sr No.ParameterValueSource
1.Catchment Area699 sqkm[1]
2.Water Spread5259 Ha[1]
3.Maximum Depth29.57 m[1]
4.Mean Depth5.3 m[5]
5.Temperature36°C to 26°C[3]
6.pH7.2 – 8.5[3]
7.TDS267mg/l – 151 mg/l[3]
8.Specific Conductivity353µS/cm – 180µS/cm[3]
9.Nitrate2.31 mg/l – 0.48 mg/l[3]
10.Chloride52 mg/l – 26 mg/l[3]
11.Total Alkalinity242 mg/l – 120 mg/l[3]
12.Total Hardness162 mg/l – 114 mg/l[3]
13.Dissolved Oxygen7.3 mg/l – 5 mg/l[3]
14.BOD6.4 mg/l – 3.2 mg/l[3]
15.Free Carbon Dioxide3 mg/l[4]
16.Bicarbonate Alkalinity120 mg/l[4]
17.Magnesium19.5 mg/l[4]
18.Orthophosphate1.99 mg/l[4]
19.COD20 mg/l[4]

Present Condition

Halali Dam, Source: Googlemaps
Halali (Bais) River, Source: Googlemaps

Waste water from the city of Bhopal joins the river from the Patra Nallah, which contains domestic as well as industrial waste.[1] But a study using bio-indicators suggests that the pollution load of the Halali river is reduced over distance as these pollutants settle down. Then mitigating pollution of the river nearer to the reservoir like at Islamnagar is a critical task that needs to be taken by concerned departments [4].

The physico-chemical study suggests that most of the parameters are under permissible limits of WHO and BSI, and therefore the water can be used for pisciculture, irrigation and drinking after treatment. [3] However, the reservoir is still facing severe threat due to anthropogenic activities like discharge of untreated wastewater and sewage, and agricultural runoffs.

Possible Solutions:

If the present condition of discharging wastewater into rivers continues, it can cause permanent damage to aquatic and terrestrial organisms and threaten the water quality. The problem source points need to be identified, for example, the discharge of sewage into the Halali river in the city of Bhopal needs to be immediately prevented. The drainage systems of various industries in the outskirts need to be checked. Farmers should be informed about optimum use of fertilizers to prevent agricultural runoffs that have high inorganic content. The rural landscapes around the dam also need to be checked for soil erosion and whether cattle waste is polluting the fringes of these water bodies. Although the state of the Halali Reservoir is still good because of lack of urbanization, the Halali river needs close monitoring to prevent permanent damage in the future. Land use planning should further prevent urbanization around the river, especially industrial setups, to control chances of pollution in the future.


[3]  Bhadwal M, Dixit M; A study on physico-chemical parameters of Halali Dam in Vidisha District (MP) Bhopal, International Journal of Advanced Science and Research, VOL 4(5) 2019

[1] Wasarat M, Chauhan R, Singh R; Study on Physicochemical Parameters of Halali Reservoir, International Journal of Research in Applied Sciences and Biotechnology, Vol 7 (5), 2020

Raina R, Kumar P, Sonaullah F, Wanganeo A; Limnological Study on a Samrat Ashok Sagar with special reference to zooplankton population, International Journal of Biodiversity and Conservation, 2013

[4] Bhadwal M, Wani M, Dixit M; Biomonitoring as a tool for assessing the water quality of river halali during monsoon season Madhya Pradesh (India), International Journal of Recent Trends in Science And Technology, 2018

[5] Yadav R, Patil P; Halali Reservoir Restudy the Seasonal Variations in Physico-Chemical Characteristics of Water, World Journal of Pharmaceutical Research Vol 7 (7), 2018


%d bloggers like this: