The historic Ulsoor lake, which dates back to the time of Kempegowda, has been a symbol of Bengaluru for generations. There was a time when Bengaluru was one of the best Indian cities to live in and Ulsoor lake was at the heart of its image as a city boasting of good weather, greenery and little pollution. But sadly, the lake is once again slowly deteriorating due to the inflow of sewage into it and dumping of garbage along its embankments.
Just over a year ago thousands of fish died due to eutrophication caused by flow of untreated sewage into the lake and temporarily alerted the officials concerned to its condition. Yet, despite such incidents of fish deaths in the lake, the authorities have turned a blind eye to its pollution, which continues to grow.
The lake is currently maintained by the military (Madras Sappers) but the wetlands, comprising of its inlet and outlets are maintained by the BBMP. There is a 5 MLD sewage treatment plant, which is supposed to treat the sewage before releasing it into the lake and Rs. 60 lakh has been earmarked for desilting it, an exercise which will involve draining it of its water first.
The BBMP needs to plan and implement the desilting operations in a time- bound manner and ensure that the Detailed Project Report includes inputs from citizens and experts. It must prioritise maintaining the ecological balance in the area and make sure, in cooperation with the BWSSB, that the storm water drains leading to Ulsoor lake are free of sewage. To put it simply, keeping the lake clean is a must as its condition contributes majorly to the city’s image.
— Suresh NR, Director, Namma Bengaluru Foundation...