Revive Gottigere lake by May, Upa Lokayukta directs civic agencies

'Clear encroachments, garbage and fence the water body'

Revive Gottigere lake by May, Upa Lokayukta directs civic agencies

Upa Lokayukta Justice S B Majage has directed the Bruhat Bangalore Mahanagara Palike (BBMP), the Bangalore Development Authority (BDA) and the Bangalore Water Supply and Sewerage Board (BWSSB) to revive the Gottigere lake by May 15.

After he received a series of complaints from the local residents and the volunteers of ‘We Save’, an NGO, the Upa Lokayukta visited the lake on Wednesday.

Speaking to Deccan Herald, Majage said the residents of the area had complained to him around eight months ago that the lake had been encroached upon.

Following their complaints, he said he had instructed the BBMP and the BDA officials to fence the lake.

“Around two weeks ago, the residents met me again and said that though the lake had been fenced, the problem of encroachment continued in some parts,” he said.

Justice Majage, along with a team of Lokayukta officials, inspected the lake on Wednesday and found that, apart from the encroachment menace, the lake was in a pathetic condition.

The lakebed was littered with garbage and sewage was also being let into the lake, polluting it.

A few people had sunk borewells on the lakebed, which they claimed, had gone defunct. But the team members noticed tyre marks of water tankers and a trail of water that had trickled from tankers.

Illegal road
The team members also noticed a road that had come up illegally on the lakebed, which had been constructed by drying up a portion of the lake.

Though the residents in the vicinity claimed that the road had existed since last 40 years, however, the officials denied it.

The team also stumbled upon irrigation and agricultural works being undertaken on the other side of the lakebed. The Upa Lokayukta directed the residents to present documents to prove the existence of road and also to prove the ownership of land being utilised for agricultural purpose.

The BDA, BWSSB and BBMP officials pointed out to the Upa Lokayukta that though they had fenced the lake, it had been demolished by vested interests.

The officials sought four months’ time to fence the lake, clear the encroachments, take steps to instal a sewage treatment plant and clear the lakebed of weeds and garbage.
However, the Upa Lokayukta gave them only two months’ time.

“I will visit again on May 15 in the hope that there will be some improvement in the condition of the lake. The residents should also extend their co-operation to the officials to maintain the lakes. There are problems galore with almost all the lakes in the City. Citizens can approach me and I will try my best to save the water bodies,” he added.

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