Supreme Court lifts stay on KC Valley project

The various stages of sewage water being treated at the grit basin of the KC Valley in Bengaluru. DH File Photo

The Supreme Court on Friday lifted its stay on the Karnataka government’s ambitious scheme to pump secondary treated water from the sewage treatment plants of Bengaluru city to minor irrigation tanks situated in the arid districts of Kolar and Chikkaballapur.

A bench of Chief Justice Ranjan Gogoi and Justices Deepak Gupta and Sanjiv Khanna noted submission by the Bangalore Water Supply and Sewerage Board (BWSSB) and the Karnataka Pollution Control Board, that the water was not meant for drinking purpose but intended to recharge the groundwater.

The top court also recorded that the scheme -- known as K&C valley -- is in conformity with best practices adopted in the world.

Senior advocate Shyam Divan and Balaji Srinivasan, appearing for the BWSSB, contended that the sewage water under the scheme would percolate down to the ground which would take care of its impurities. Karnataka’s Advocate General Udaya Holla was present during the hearing.

After vacating its stay order of January 7, the top court asked R Anjaneya Reddy, president of Shashwatha Neeravari Horata Samithi, represented by advocate Prashant Bhushan, to approach the high court. The court disposed of the special leave petition, even as Bhushan claimed test reports of the water showed higher level of pollutants.

The top court had earlier suspended the operation of the interim order issued on September 28, 2018 by the high court, which refused to stay the scheme. A writ petition was filed in the high court.

The state government had claimed the petition was “motivated and malafide and filed at the behest of downstream users of water at Bellandur lake.”

The K&C valley and H&N Valley projects, being implemented by the Karnataka government, envisaged pumping of 210 MLD of secondary treated water or reclaimed water from Nagavara, Hennur and Horamavu STPs to Amani Gopal Krishna Kere and onwards to fill 65 tanks in Bengaluru rural and urban and Chikkaballapur districts.

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Supreme Court lifts stay on KC Valley project

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