BENGALURU: After the National Green Tribunal’s (NGT) first order to clean up Bellandur Lake was passed on April 19, urban agencies had seemingly sprung into action. However, not much progress has taken place on the ground.
NGT had issued directions to the Urban Development Department to clean the lake in a month’s time. Despite strict instructions from the tribunal to shut down all the industries releasing sewage water in the vicinity of the lake, a majority of them continue to operate.
The pollution board merely published a public notice as a warning. This was something that the tribunal took note of in the hearing. The only concrete step was the deweeding taken up by the BDA, but only two harvesters were utilised for the 900-acre lake.
Residents said it seemed like the authorities were simply trying to show that they were doing something, without any plan or intent.
Seema Sharma, a resident of Bellandur who has been closely monitoring the work, said, “There is no plan in place. In fact, we hear the lake fencing broke down on Wednesday. They got just two harvesters and two earthmovers for such a huge lake. We have not sighted any aerators yet. BBMP says they have deployed security guards and vehicles, but we have never seen them. What kind of monitoring are they talking about, when there are no street lights near the lake? We see construction debris even now.”
KSPCB chief Laxman said, “Over 30 industries have been issued closure notices. We will be able to declare the total number.”
According to BDA officials, the deweeding work near Suncity apartment has been completed. The harvesters have now been moved towards Bellandur village. As for two more harvesters joining the work, an official said that they will reach Bengaluru from Mumbai by this weekend.
Moreover, talks are on with a horticulture farm in Kannamangala village, which is 30km from Bengaluru city, where there is a 150-acre land with vegetation for disposing of the accumulated weed. The modalities are being worked out.
BWSSB is to implement the io-remediation process in the drain coming from Koramangala. BWSSB Chairman Tushar Girinath said, “We have finalised the bids and will submit it to the NGT. Once they give us the go ahead, we’ll start work.”
BBMP, which has installed CCTV cameras and deployed vigilance vehicles and security guards, has not recorded any dumping activity so far. “We did not capture anything on CCTVs as violators have become alert. We will deploy more men and install more cameras if we witness any dumping,” said Sarfaraj Khan, BBMP Joint Commissioner (solid waste management).
Work done since April 19
BDA: Deweeding is under progress with two harvesters and two boomers
BBMP: 7 cameras installed, 2 vigilance vehicles, 6 security guards deployed
KSPCB: Issued public notices to all industries polluting Bellandur Lake. Over 30 industries received closure notices
BWSSB: Yet to start bio-remediation process. Bioremediation is a waste management technique that uses organisms to neutralise pollutants from a contaminated site
KLCDA: Yet to start wetland development