Sewage-free lake: Experts find holes in BWSSB’s plan

Bengaluru: The BWSSB aims to make Bellandur free of sewage by 2020 by building a slew of Sewage Treatment Plants (STP), but the lakes falling under City Municipal Council (CMC) and core areas, which the board claims to have covered 100% with underground drainage (UGD) connections, are still not sewage free.

In case of UGD connection it should be linked to an STP before it flows into a storm water drain. The lake conservationists ask – Is STP at every lake a prerogative to make them sewage free? Ulsoor lake where an STP plant has come up with a capacity of 2 MLD, whereas the lake receives sewage of 3 MLD, while 2 MLD of sewage enters in Vidyaranyapura lake spread over 24 acres.

Ram Prasad, co-founder, Friends of Lake, said, “The situation worsens during monsoon as the sewage directly enters the lake. If the BWSSB claims that the area is fully covered with UGD then how can sewage enter the Storm Water Drains (SWD).”

He further questioned the BWSSB if the city’s SWD would ever be free of sewage, as for the past six years the officials have been figuring out the residential and commercial establishments which have not been connected to the UGD.

The 124-acre Doddabommasandra lake under the jurisdiction of BBMP is next to the Vidyaranyapura lake and over 6 MLD of sewage enters the lake during the monsoon. Despite the diversion of sewage, it continues to enter the lake as the channels are not wide enough to carry the amount of sewage.

Until 1996 the Vidyaranyapura Lake was maintained by Bharat Electronics Limited (BEL), after which it was handed over to the BWSSB but lately the STP has stopped functioning.

Prasad pointed out, “The old STP should be re-opened and sewage water can be pumped directly to it since the STP is in upstream.”

The BWSSB chief engineer said, “Tenders by the end of February would be called for the construction of UGD lines in 110 villages. In the core areas of the city, the UGD connection is 100% while in the CMC area it is 95%.”

One of the biggest inferences one would arrive is that the city cannot depend on the lakes to meet water demands, unless the water bodies are made sewage free.

Amount of sewage entering lakes

3 MLD, Ulsoor Lake, 2 MLD Vidyaranyapura Lake, 6 MLD Doddabommasandra Lake.


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