'Unplanned growth will make Bengaluru a dead city'

'Unplanned growth will make Bengaluru a dead city'

Prof Ramachandra, an outspoken critic of unplanned urban growth, presented his latest findings on unsustainable development.

Bad environment is already visible, say experts. FILE PHOTO

Lakes will soon become seasonal waterbodies as unplanned and unbridled development, coupled with reduced green cover, will turn Bengaluru a dead city, IISc professor T V Ramachandra warned on Friday.

Delivering a talk on ‘Lessons of Unplanned Urbanisation: Bengaluru (A dying city with burning and frothing lakes)’, Ramachandra presented the findings from the Centre of Ecological Sciences, Indian Institute of Science (IISc) to make his case.

According to the study, the city’s urban cover will spread over 98.5% of the area by 2025 leaving a dismal amount of greenery which will not be able to provide for oxygen for all.

“The day is not far when people have to pack an oxygen bottle for their child along with food and water bottle. But people highlighting this are still receiving death threats from those destroying the environment,” he said.

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Health issues

Ramachandra said the effect of the bad environment was already visible in society as health issues have soared.

“Earlier, only one in 1 lakh people suffered a kidney failure. But now it has come to one in 500 people. Children are suffering from bone marrow cancer. What else do we need to understand the importance of protecting our surroundings,” he asked.

Ramachandra opined that the Karnataka Lake Conservation and Development Authority should not have been repealed. “The lakes have been handed over to the minor irrigation department which will not do anything,” he said.

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He said the government has strong legislative backing in Wetlands Rules 2010 but their implementation remains poor.

“Pumping unprocessed sewage water and dumping garbage into lakes goes on unchecked. Destruction of lakes will continue till people correct their own behaviour,” he said.

Prof Ramachandra, who had warned in 2016 that Bengaluru would be unliveable in five years, has been an outspoken critic of the nature of Bengaluru's growth and development. He has called out the lack of political will and public participation to ensure that India's Silicon Valley doesn't become unsustainble or unliveable in the near future.

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