1,000 signatures reached
To: KJ George, Bengaluru Development Minister; Tushar Girinath, Chairman of Bengaluru Water Supply and Sewerage Board
Urgent restoration of Bellandur lake
– Push forward the 2020 deadline for installation of Sewage Treatment Plants (STP) around the lake
– Install more CCTV cameras to check for illegal dumping, ensure strict monitoring of the footage and fine levying for offenders.
Why is this important?
Over half of Bengaluru’s 70 lakes are severely polluted – the water is not fit for drinking or even bathing, according to a Water Quality Index test carried out by Karnataka State Pollution Control Board in November last year. Bellandur Lake, the city’s largest water body that’s spread over 750 acres, is the most polluted and has caught fire multiple times in the last few years. In fact, the pollution levels are so severe that toxic froth routinely forms on the lake bed and spills over into surrounding areas.
KJ George recently said that he wants the lake to become a water sports hub following its revival. While these are grand plans, the core problem needs urgent addressing.
Nearly 400 litres of effluents and sewage are flushed into Bellandur lake every day. Almost 5000 army personnel were roped in in a 24-hour operation to douse the blaze last month. According to experts, the sludge has accumulated 40 feet deep inside the lake bed. Besides, residents around the area have been inhaling toxic fumes and putting up with the stink that emanates from the lake, which is a serious health concern.
While there are lots of citizen groups and local bodies engaged in awareness and activism around saving the lake, there needs to be greater accountability at the government level. From the BDA down to the BBMP and BWSSB, they need to have a streamlined action plan to tackle the issue. If one nodal agency (BDA) is in charge, other agencies can work in co-ordination with the BDA.
Bengaluru's reputation of pristine air has been under threat for a while now and with rapid encroachment and development, air pollution levels are only getting worse. If Bellandur lake is restored, its success could be replicated to save other lakes around the city.