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Dorekere Lake gets a facelift, but sewage threat lingers

G Manjusainath, Bangalore, Feb 25, 2013, DHNS : 1:49 IST

The 500-yr-old water body was developed by Kempegowda

Restored: The Dorekere Lake revived by Bruhat Bangalore Mahanagara Palike brims with water. dh photo
From a distance, the historic Dorekere may look like a slice right out of Singapore with its brimming pristine water mirroring the skyscrapers surrounding it, thanks to the lake rejuvenation programme of the Bruhat Bangalore Mahanagara Palike (BBMP).

But the lake wasn’t so a month ago. Weeds had choked it, despite several measures taken by the civic body. BBMP engineers, however, fear their efforts to give the water body a new lease of life would turn futile as sewage poses a perenial threat.

The Palike had to take up rejuvenation of Dorekere on a priority basis in view of the fact that it was built by the founder of Bangalore, Kempegowda, about 500 years ago. It chalked out a Rs 5.5-crore plan for the purpose and diverted sewage flowing from two directions into the water body and let it pass through the sewage treatment plant.

Despite these measures, waste water continued to gush into the lake. For two years, the BBMP struggled to arrest the flow of dirty water and has now succeeded to a good extent.

But Palike engineers are worried that the measures they had taken to check the flow of waste water into the lake may be marred during rains.

Last year, sewage flowing through the two storm water drains gushed into Dorekere after heavy rains. As a result, the lake was again filled with dirty water. Subsequently, water hyacinth choked it completely. The lake was in a shambles until de-weeding was done recently at a cost of about Rs 15 lakh.

A BBMP engineer, who has been monitoring the Dorekere rejuvenation programme, blamed the Bangalore Water Supply and Sewerage Board (BWSSB) for the pathetic state of the lake and ruining their efforts.

“The BWSSB is supposed to set up the sewage treatment plant in the upstream of the storm water drain,” said an engineer. He said garbage dumped into the storm water drain was posing a major threat to the lake. It not only obstructed the STP set up next to Dorekere, but also led to flooding. Garbage has damaged the anicut built by the Palike to prevent the flow of sewage.

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