Will continue as lake panel chief, says KB Koliwad

In an interview with Deccan Chronicle, he said that the report will be submitted under his chairmanship.

BENGALURU: After his nomination as Speaker, Mr K.B. Koliwad, an MLA and chairman of the legislature committee on encroachment of lakebeds, said that he will still continue as the chairman of the lake committee, as he has invested a lot of effort to get inputs on encroachments of lakes and raja kaluves. In an interview with Deccan Chronicle, he said that the report will be submitted under his chairmanship.

Now that you have been nominated the Speaker, will you still continue as chairman of the lake committee and is there a provision for a Speaker to head such a committee?
Of course, I will continue as the chairman of the committee. I have done extensive work and put in a lot of efforts to get information and collate it. It is a subject close to my heart and I wish to submit the report under my chairmanship. There is provision in law for the Speaker to head committees and I have already intimated my desire to Chief Minister Siddaramaiah.

When will be the final report on the lakes and raje kaluves be submitted and what will be the major findings?
The committee still has time till August to submit the report. I intend to submit the report before the deadline. The major findings will be naming of the encroachers and giving suggestions to the government on removing the encroachments. However, the government will take a decision on ways and means to clear the encroachments.

After the National Green Tribunal (NGT) order on increasing the buffer zones around lakes and drains, what have you directed the revenue officials?
I will abide by the recent NGT order on the buffer zone. I have directed the revenue officials, including deputy commissioners and assistant commissioner, to get fresh inputs. It may be time consuming, but they are already on the job.

What will be the fate of layouts that have been developed on the lakebeds? Why some of the encroachers have not replied to the notices?
We will record out statement on encroached layouts, be it government or private. The government will take a call on it. Some of the encroachers may not have replied as they would be ready to part with the encroached land. In rural areas, farmers who have lands adjoining lakes would have encroached and they will not have any objections.

After clearing the encroachments, will lake areas be developed or what is the action plan?
The encroachments will be cleared as per the provisions of the law by the officials. The basic aim of the committee is to ensure protection, rejuvenation and preservation of lakes and these principles will the adhered to. This helps in bring back the glory of Bengaluru and its waterbodies.

( Source : Deccan Chronicle. )
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