LAKES are the ecological barometers of the well-being of any area. And keeping that in mind, the Forest Department's Lake Development office is making sure that our lakes are going to get the chance to breathe again. Three major lake restoration projects have been sanctioned by the government and are already in the tendering phase. While last year's projects, the Nagavara and the Vengainkere lake restoration are nearing completion, the government has released nearly 14 crore I rupees for the three new restoration1, projects for the Bellandur lake, the Kotigere lake and the Jarganahallic lake. Rupees 5.5 crore each has been sanctioned for the restoration of the first two lakes, while 3.5 has been sanctioned for the Jarganahalli lake.
Chief Conservator of Forests, A K, Varma says "Over the past two decades, more than 35 per cent of the water bodies within and on the out-skirts of the city have vanished thanks to unchecked development. But now, we are taking steps to ensure that the 240 surviving water bodies in the whole of Bangalore district are saved and this restoration project is being carried out in a phased manner." Varma adds that the restoration for each of the lakes is being, undertaken according to the requirement of the lake. "Bio-remedial measures are being adopted for the Bellandur lake.
The other two lakes will have comprehensive restoration that includes de-silting, island formation and de-weeding." Experts feel saving the lakes will go a long way in solving the city's water problems. "We must conserve the city's water bodies, identify pollution problems and find suitable measures to contain these problems," says Dr T' V Ramachandra of the Indian Institute of Science. The restoration work on these lakes' is expected to begin in the coming weeks.