Bengaluru Lakes: Drying up amidst urgent need for rainfall

Bengaluru Lakes: Drying up amidst urgent need for rainfall

Bengaluru Lakes: Drying up amidst urgent need for rainfall

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125 out of the approximately 800 lakes spanning BBMP (Greater Bengaluru) and Bengaluru Urban district have dried up, underscoring the severity of this year’s summer. Additionally, 25 more lakes within BBMP limits are on the verge of drying up, emphasizing the urgent need for substantial rainfall in the next two weeks to avert further depletion.

Of the 125 lakes that have dried up, 100 are located in Bengaluru Urban district, while the remaining 25 are within BBMP limits. Some of these desiccated lake beds have swiftly transformed into makeshift cricket pitches, providing local boys and young enthusiasts a space to showcase their sporting talents, as noted by BBMP officials. Among the 184 lakes under BBMP’s purview, 50 are facing critical conditions. Beyond BBMP’s jurisdiction, Bengaluru Urban District oversees over 600 lakes, with nearly 100 of them drying up this year.

However, amidst the concerning trend, there are glimmers of hope. Six lakes within Bengaluru Urban district are brimming to capacity, while 19 others are filled between 50% to 90%, largely attributed to the Koramangala-Challaghatta and Hebbal-Nagavara valley projects, according to an engineer.

Notably, dried-up lakes like Nallurahalli Lake near Whitefield and Vibhutipura Lake near HAL have been repurposed as recreational grounds. The depletion of these water bodies poses a potential threat to the groundwater table and could impede fishing activities. Yet, officials remain optimistic, citing recent rainfall and forecasts predicting continued precipitation, which could rejuvenate the dry and drying lakes.

However, it’s not crucial to highlight that the count of 184 BBMP lakes excludes 19 water bodies that are no longer in use. Sankey Tank, a prominent water body in the heart of Bengaluru, is among those rapidly drying up.

Addressing the issue, an officer emphasized the efforts being made by the Bangalore Water Supply and Sewerage Board (BWSSB) to replenish lakes by using treated water from sewage treatment plants. Nonetheless, for lakes located farther away, dependency on rainfall remains the primary solution, underscoring the critical need for sustained precipitation to mitigate the water crisis.