Coronavirus lockdown and a lake revival

Lockdown and a lake revival

An elephantine effort

While the lockdown brought the country to a near-standstill, it helped in the rejuvenation of a lake in Chippali-Lingadahalli village in Sagar taluk, Shivamogga district.

A 25-member team, comprising the villagers, Sagar taluk’s water task force and volunteers from a local civil society organisation Swan & Man rejuvenated Aanesondilu Tank by desilting it.

They toiled from morning till evening for 17 days, between March 31 and April 16, to revive the waterbody spread over half an acre.

One earth-mover and three tippers were used for the purpose. Over 2,500 loads of silt was removed from the tank and dumped one kilometre away. The desilted tank has three feet of water now.

Their effort was rightly timed, for the summer months usually see water crisis.

They have also constructed check-drains to avoid the inflow of muddy water from the near-by hills.

And, this is not their maiden effort. The villagers had de-silted Bangaramma Tank, one of the connecting tanks linked to the main Ganapathi Tank, in the heart of Sagar taluk, in 2017.

Funds came from Karnataka Bank, which offered Rs 2 lakh for the purpose through corporate social responsibility, women self-help groups and other residents.

The villagers hope the golden days of Aanesondilu Tank will return next rainy season.

Environmentalist Akhilesh Chippali said the desilting could inspire many in Malnad as villages there have silted tanks in need of revival. He urged villagers to take up desilting as it also helps the wildlife. For instance, the rejuvenation of Aanesondilu Tank will help the wildlife as the area is also a bison corridor.