At the central level the Union Ministry of Water Resources is responsible for development, conservation and management of water as a national resource, i.e., for the general policy on water resources development and for technical assistance to the states on irrigation, multipurpose projects, ground water exploration and exploitation, command area development, drainage, flood control, water logging, sea erosion problems, dam safety and hydraulic structures for navigation and hydropower. It also oversees the regulation and development of inter-State rivers. These functions are carried out through various Central Organisations.Urban water supply and sewage disposal is handled by the Ministry of Urban Development while Rural Water Suppy comes in the purview of Department of Drinking Water under Ministry of Rural Development. The subject of Hydro-electric power and thermal power is the responsibility of the Ministry of Power. Pollution and environment control comes under the purview of the Ministry of Environment and Forests.
Water being a State subject, the State Governments have primary responsibility for use and control of this resource. The administrative control and responsibility for development of water rests with the various State Departments and Corporations. Major and medium irrigation is handled by the irrigation/water resources departments. Minor irrigation is looked after partly by water resources departments, minor irrigation corporations, Zilla Parishads/Panchayats and by the other departments such as agriculture. Urban water supply is generally the responsibility of public health departments and panchayats take care of rural water supply. Government tubewells are constructed and managed by the irrigation/water resources department or by tube well corporations set up for the purpose. Hydro-power is the responsibility of the State Electricity Boards.