The High Court on Tuesday directed the tahsildar, Bangalore South, to clear encroachments around Sarakki lake in Jaraganahalli, Sarakki and Puttenahalli villages within six weeks.
Hearing a petition by People’s Campaign for Right to Water and others, seeking that encroachments be cleared and the lake be restored, the division bench comprising Chief Justice D H Waghela and Justice H G Ramesh directed the BDA to restore the lake to its original condition within a reasonable time.
“Barring the lake lands occupied by BWSSB, specifically for laying trunk sewers and intermediate sewage pumping station, all other identified encroachments in the survey map are illegal and should be demolished,” the court said.
During the hearing, government counsel R Devdas submitted that there are 135 encroachers and it requires police protection to evict them. He submitted that 26 guntas of land had been encroached upon in Puttenahalli village, 39 guntas in Sarakki and 1.4 acres of lake land had been encroached upon in Jaraganahalli. Devdas sought six weeks’ time to clear the encroachments. The bench recorded the submission and granted the time. The police have been directed to provide the required security during the drive to clear the encroachments.
The BDA, which has so far fenced only 725 metres of the circumference of the lake, has been directed to complete the remaining work after demarcation of the boundaries by the Revenue Department and take necessary steps to rejuvenate it.
The Lake Development Authority has been directed to assist BDA, to ensure clear and clean water in the lake after rejuvenation. The petitioners had moved the Court stating that Sarakki lake was a victim of pollution and encroachment.