BBMP files case against BWSSB for Hulimavu Lake breach

Many families started picking up the pieces in order to return to their homes following the Hulimavu flood. DH PHOTO/JANARDHAN B K

A preliminary investigation into the Hulimavu Lake breach revealed that a part of the lake bund was dug up to check an overflow that had resulted in water falling on to the premises of a temple, which eventually led to the mishap.

BBMP assistant engineer Lingegowda filed a complaint with the Hulimavu police, charging BWSSB assistant engineer Karthik with causing the lake breach.

Lingegowda stated in his complaint that another BBMP assistant engineer, Shilpa, who is in-charge of Hulimavu, had questioned Karthik about the work near the lake bund. Karthik told her that as the lake was full, water was flowing into a temple situated nearby. Next to the temple, the BWSSB had taken up an STP work.

He told Shilpa that residents had requested him to let out the lake water. But Shilpa said she will inspect the spot and asked him to give a written request.

Lingegowda added in the complaint that after the lake breached, he had visited the spot and noticed that someone had dug up the lake bund to allow the water to flow out. He suspected that the BWSSB, which was carrying out the STP work, had caused it. He said workers employed by Karthik might have demolished the bund, leading to the breach and subsequent flooding of about 1,500 houses in the area.

“We have detained Karthik and two others for questioning,” said a senior police officer.

Isha Pant, DCP (Southeast), said: “We are yet to make any arrests in the case as it is not yet clear who was responsible for the flooding. We are on the lookout for a person who used an excavator to dig up the bund area.”

BWSSB chairperson Tushar Girinath refused to comment on the FIR. “The BWSSB cannot work outside its premises. That work will not benefit us anyway. The place where the incident occurred belongs to a different civic body. Somebody would have given a different contract to the same agency hired by us earlier. Our contract does not involve bund work,” he told DH. 

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