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Parched Chembarambakkam lake turns into garbage dumping ground
With the Chembarambakkam lake going dry, the Bengaluru-Chennai highway side of the lake has become a dumping site for garbage while miscreants are trashing the place with construction debris and non-degradable waste.
Urgent steps need to be taken to improve the security where there is public access, and it needs to be given a facelift, said environmental activists from the city.
“Because of its arid state, trespassers are polluting the surface — two-wheelers can also be found doing rounds in the area,” pointed Arun Krishnamurthy, founder, Environmentalist Foundation of India.
The government has to rejuvenate the water body along with the five other lakes in the city, said Sabari Green Foundation’s founder V Subramani. “For the last 10 years, the government has been promising to desilt the lake but no action has been taken. In fact, if it is deepened, all the water that gets collected during the monsoon need not be wastefully let into the sea through the Adyar river. This can take care of water supply during the summer,” he explained.
An eight-year desilting project has been proposed for the lake as well as Cholavaram tank, Red Hills tank and Sathyamoorthy Sagar reservoir in Poondi, claimed PWD officials. “It is pending approval, which may take a week more,” said a senior official. “The plan is to increase Chembarambakkam Lake’s capacity by more than 500 mcft, for which deepening of the entire water storage area will be undertaken. They further said, “Since we can’t dump the dug up earth anywhere, we’re planning to sell it to generate revenue for the government.”
Before the project begins, the excess plant growth, as well as the garbage, will be cleared. “We have teams that survey the area frequently and clear any trash spotted. However, it is difficult to place a team there 24x7,” stated the officials. The department is even open to receiving photographs of polluted areas, which they will attend to and clear immediately.