BANGALORE: The cash-strapped Bruhat Bangalore Mahanagara Palike (BBMP) for its new attempt, development of lakes in the city, has sought financial assistance from the state government.
In the BBMP council on Thursday, responding to JD(S) leader Padmanabha Reddy’s queries on conservation of lakes in the city, commissioner M K Shankarlinge Gowda said there were 183 lakes, of which 132 come under the BBMP. He added clearance of sewage was Palike’s responsibility and there were complaints of diverting sewage into these lakes. In this regard, Palike has to maintain lakes, the leader demanded.
Further, the commissioner said in July 2011, High Court had ordered the BBMP, Bangalore Development Authority (BDA), Lake Development Authority, Karnataka State Pollution Control Board (KSPCB) and state government to bear the financial burden in equal proportions, to preserve the lakes.
The state government has to allot separate budget for the same. “We have Rs 238 crore liability on preserving and developing the lakes. Hence, we have asked the government to bear 50 per cent of the total cost,” he said, and added government grants for rejuvenation of lakes will be included in the next budget.
Shankarlinge Gowda replied that BBMP forest department should plant six lakh saplings as per the budget, of which only three lakh saplings were planted. “I will direct the authorities concerned to plant those saplings in the peripheral area of the lake, which will act as fencing too. This will also help in increasing groundwater level,” he said.
The commissioner also said that out of 183 identified lakes, 356 acres land belonging to these lakes were encroached. Of which 131 acres has been reclaimed. “Around 220 acres of land needs to be reclaimed with the help of tahsildhars,” he said.
Commissioner stressed the need to treat used water. In a city like London, Thames river water is used even after recyling it seven times. “If we have to provide water to the entire city, treatment of water is essential. I will discuss the same with BWSSB,” he added.