Encroachments shrink Hoodi, Sadaramangala lakes to death

Residents want waterbodies fenced to prevent garbage dumping

Plaster of Paris Ganesha idols and heaps of garbage dumped in Sadaramangala Lake, KR Puram, have remain uncleared, painting a sorry picture of the waterbody.

Hoodi Lake, which is situated nearby, is also in shambles. The two lakes have shrunk drastically over the years. Hoodi lake, at one point in time, spanned 15.10 acres.

The catchment area of these lakes was encroached upon by builders even as officials looked the other way. About 1.29 acres of Hoodi lake has been encroached upon by the government itself to build roads and burial grounds.

Seema Garg, CEO, Karnataka Lake Conservation and Development Authority, said officials involved in the encroachment do not take the permission of the Authority before going ahead with the projects. She said now that it has been brought to their notice, they will take action.

Operators of private water tankers used to draw water from the lake illegally and supply it to the city. But this has been stopped now, said Balachandran P, a resident.

Sadaramangala Lake, which comes under BDA, has been allotted Rs 4.8 crore last year. Yet, no work has started to conserve it. Much of the Hoodi Lake has been encroached upon for huge buildings, roads and a burial ground.

A lake development engineer denied there was an encroachment, saying a survey of Sadaramangala lake has been undertaken. “After funds were allotted, a tender was called and we are continuing the survey,” said T Jagannatha Rao, executive engineer, who is in charge of the two lakes.

Residents living around the two lakes have been fighting for their rejuvenation over the past three years.

“It has become my job to chase away people dumping garbage here. After the issue was taken up with Bengaluru Development Minister K J George, this menace has stopped. But drunkards create a ruckus here at night,” said Virupaksha Rao, another resident.

“All we want the authorities to do is fence the lakes and create pathways, on the lines of Sankey tank,” Rao said.

Lately, both these lakes are full, thanks to the continuous rainfall. Residents say the waterbodies should be fenced so that tanker operators are prevented from drawing water from there.
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