The record rainfall over the last two months has not only affected the lives of city dwellers, but also the aquatic life in many lakes. Witnessing a heavy influx of floodwaters mixed with sewage, several lakes in the city are reporting the death of aquatic animals. The latest to the list of such lakes are Jakkur and Rachenahalli in North Bengaluru.
“This is an immediate aftereffect of the heavy rains. Owing to the rains, most of the lakes that drain into the Jakkur Lake were full and overflowing. Also, the stormwater drains flowing into the lake had carried garbage and sewage into the lake triggering the death of fishes,” said Dr Annapurna Kamath, a member of Jalaposhan — a citizens’ movement for the protection of Jakkur Lake.
The fish death was first noticed on November 23 after the heavy rains. “No one can deny that at least a small amount of sewage enters into every lake in the city. However, with constant monitoring, we were able to keep that quantity of sewage under control at the Jakkur Lake so that the ecology around the lake is conserved,” Annapurna said. The water from the Jakkur Lake further flows into the Rachenahalli Lake and hence fish death was noticed even at that lake.
She added that the incident has prompted both activists and the authorities to think about the actions that need to be taken to prevent such incidents in the future.
“This was unprecedented. But now, we know what the worst could be and we have to make sure actions are taken to avoid such situations in future,” she said.
“The lakes will return to normalcy in a few days. However, we need to strengthen our system and upgrade the STPs. Also, both the BBMP and BWSSB have to prepare an action plan to mitigate the entry of sewage into the lakes,” Annapurna suggested.