Lake blaze: civic bodies pass buck

Lake blaze: civic bodies pass buck

A day after a fire raged for four hours at Bengaluru’s largest water body, civic agencies began pointing fingers at one another.

A thick cloud of smoke rose from the 920-acre Bellandur lake as illegally dumped garbage erupted in flames on Thursday.

On Friday, legislators and officials of the Bangalore Development Authority, Bruhat Bengaluru Mahanagara Palike and Karnataka State Pollution Control Board visited the spot.

BDA officials blamed the BBMP for not stopping garbage dumping.

“The BDA is the custodian of the lake, but it is the BBMP’s job to protect it from garbage dumping,” said Veersingh Nayak, BDA executive engineer, east zone.

He said combustible chemicals had mixed with the garbage and sparked the conflagration. “This would not have happened had the BBMP taken action against those dumping garbage,” he contended.

BBMP officials in turn blamed the BDA. “How are we responsible when they are the custodians? If they could build a boundary wall with a mesh, there would be no dumping. They have no funds to take care of any of the city’s lakes,” a municipal official said.

Civic incompetence

The pollution control authorities are slamming the BDA, BBMP and BWSSB for the pathetic condition of the lake.

Lakshman, KSPCB chairman, said he had issued notices to all three agencies.

“We have also told them to implement the expert committee report on the rejuvenation of the Bellandur lake,” he said.

Officials of the Karnataka Lake Conservation and Development Authority also visited the lake. G Vidyasagar, its chief executive officer, said his organisation was ready to take care of the lake once its boundaries were fixed. The tahsildar has written 13 letters since 2013 to the BBMP and BDA to mark out the boundaries. But nothing has happened, he said.

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