Bellandur lake fire: BDA begins hunt for causes, culprits

Last Updated 21 January 2018, 11:42 IST

Following the Saturday meeting with all stake holders and fighting fire at Bellandur lake for nearly 30 hours, the Bangalore Development Authority (BDA) has begun the hunt for the culprits who caused it.

The BDA has roped in locals to clean up weeds, garbage and dry grass around the lake.

A senior BDA official who visited the lake on Sunday  told  DH: "We have confirmed that the dry grass around the lake was set on fire by miscreants. It is also evident that there is something in the lake which is fueling the fire and making it ignite  sporadically".    

Unlike forest fires, the flames raged for over 30 hours. While the firemen were busy putting out flames, BDA officers were questioning locals to find out who the culprits were.    

The BDA is shooting videos to document the locals' statements, as per directions by ACS Mahendra Jain. The BDA has joined the local police for gathering evidence.  

BDA admits that there could have been laxity among officials, which could have caused the fire. BDA Commissioner Rakesh Singh has called for a meeting of all BDA engineers and staffers  on Monday.

"In the mean time I have also ordered the clearing of dry grass and garbage around the lake. We will clean up the water body starting Sunday," Singh said.  

Singh added that restoration of the lake will be discussed during the Monday meeting and a final decision will be on how the area needs to be   protected.

Chief Secretary seeks report

Speaking to DH, Chief Secretary Ratna Prabha said that there was no need to blame officials. "But I have asked them for a report of the incident on Monday," she added. 

"What is the need to pull up the officials? They are doing their job. I will meet with them and find out the cause. I am not being lenient. I have asked for specific details that they will have to answer personally. Since this is happening frequently at Bellandur lake, it is a serious issue," she pointed out.  

(Published 21 January 2018, 11:32 IST)

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