Written By K Kushaala (Grade 8)
Bellandur Lake which was one of the oldest and largest lakes in Bengaluru was the lifeline for the surrounding 18 villages a few decades ago. The lake water was used for irrigation as well as for drinking and people used to celebrate Theppotsava (boat festival) on this now infamous lake. The lake is about 891.9 acres and its water-storing capacity is 17.66 million cubic feet.
Bellandur Lake is part of the Varthur Lake series and one of the most polluted lakes in Bengaluru. It has become more or less a sewage tank because of the untreated sewage water entering the lake through various inlets. However, Bellandur lake gets sewage inflow for 2 main reasons
- Improper sewage system due to which untreated water overflows and joins storm water drains, mixes with the rainwater, which in turn flows into the Bellandur Lake via Koramangala and Challaghatta valley.
- Lack of effluent treatment plants to treat industrial wastes from small factories which also get into the stormwater drains.
In the last few months, the far end of Bellandur Lake has constantly witnessed “foam formation”. The stinky froth that irritates skin has been a matter of concern for people residing in the Bellandur area. This lather forms especially during the monsoon when large volumes of rainwater mix with the sewage in the lake water. The fire at the lake is another phenomenon that attracted photographers. The cooking oil thrown from houses that enter the lake from untreated domestic sewage is said to be the cause of the fire.
Most importantly it has led to the pollution of the groundwater tables in the surrounding areas. BWSSB is largely blamed for this mess as it has failed to manage sewage in the city which has led to the lake being polluted. Apart from this, the people of the city are also responsible for the issue.
Since there are multiple stakeholders like BBMP (sewage), LDA (overall lake management) and BDA (lake rejuvenation) an integrated plan should be made to rejuvenate the lake.
Besides this issue, now Hebbal lake is also facing a huge problem and it is the mission of the people to remove the excessive amount of pollutants and find an alternative source of water.
Featured Image Courtesy – India Today