HYDERABAD: The much talked-about Gangaram lake rejuvenation under the ambitious Mission Kakatiya in Chandanagar has been lying stale for over a year despite a hefty allocation of Rs 19 crore.
While the authorities have emptied all the water from the lake, it looks like the beautification may take some more time than anticipated as the revenue authorities are facing a challenge from illegal constructions at the Full Tank Limit (FTL) and encroachments on the patta land.
The land disputes from these two categories have delayed the sewage diversion even though the irrigation department has dewatered the lake.“We have already enumerated several structures which are inside the FTL and buffer zone. However there are some houses which are part of one layout, whose plots are very near the lake’s FTL, and they have taken up the fight in High Court.
Their contention is that when they purchased the lands, years ago the area notified was not in FTL and have approached the High court to intervene in the matter,” noted Nihant M, Revenue Inspector of Rangareddy collectorate. The decision now rests with HMDA, note revenue officials, as to whether these structures may be notified as illegal or legal.
As per authorities the lake is notified at 112 acres at FTL along with 30 metre buffer zone, jointly with irrigation department and Revenue officials survey.
This apart, officials note that the work has been delayed also because several acres of patta land has to be acquired by the revenue officials. “The area around every lake is patta land which belonged to private parties and was used for agriculture before. So a plan has to be devised as to how to acquire it as it can’t be used for any construction,” added a senior official from the irrigation department. The same issue persists in most lakes.
In these patta lands as well, the scope of encroachment has increased as the lake is now dewatered and land owners have started building boundaries and fences. “Soon after the dewatering, these plot owners are trying to build fences which we are trying to ensure do not go further ahead and encroach the lake bed,” noted a revenue official.
In all these revenue disputes, the once beautiful lake now lies dry and parched and has taken a shape like never before. “We have depleted the water in the lake using the sluice gates and diverted it downstream. However the main beautification of the bund boundaries can’t be done yet the land is still in dispute,” noted a senior official from irrigation department.