Maiden steps towards lake rejuvenation

Over 100 residents, including volunteers, school and college students took part in a cleanliness drive on the banks of the Alahalli Lake in Anjanapura on Sunday, as part of efforts to conserve the imperilled water body. 

 
For the last three Sundays, the residents have been removing weeds, garbage and silt along the edges of the lake.

Sharad Dindu, a college student, said, “I have been living here for the past nine years and have seen many pelicans and other exotic birds on the lake. Earlier fishermen used to frequent the lake which kept the weeds away, but now the water in the lake has become invisible as the water body is full of aquatic plants.”

According to Anand Yadwad, managing trustee, Alahalli Lake and Neighbourhood Development Trust, the volunteers’ work has made the lake area of 23 acres a much cleaner place.  “The lake has not been desilted in the last 10 years and is dying a slow death with sewage from neighbouring areas being diverted into it,” he added.

“The raja kaluves (canals), the inlets to the lake, are being encroached upon by residents. The borewells in the area have dried up since the lake has not been able to contribute to recharging the water table.”

“Although the Bangalore Development Authority has prepared a detailed project report (DPR) to rejuvenate the Alahalli Lake, nothing has materialised so far,” he said.

“We have not been able to clean even 10 per cent of the lake bed. There is a need for a larger initiative,” he said.

According to the DPR, Rs 2.5 crore is needed to rejuvenate the lake, said a BDA official. Due to lack of funds, the project was handed over to the Bangalore Metropolitan Region Development Authority, which later returned the project to BDA.

“The BDA is waiting for funds to start rejuvenation work,” the official said.

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