After the National Green Tribunal’s order directing the civic agencies to buck up and clean the Bellandur Lake, the Bruhat Bengaluru Mahanagara Palike, has now begun installing CCTV cameras around the lake.
The cameras are being installed to monitor those who dump garbage and debris in the lake and violate the NGT order.
In a meeting held on Friday amongst the officials of Bengaluru’s various civic agencies, Chief Secretary, Subhash Chandra Khuntia, ordered the Palike to install the cameras immediately. The work began on Friday afternoon.
“As of now, seven cameras have been installed and the number could go up. One camera is near Yemalur Gate and two in a nearby field. The cameras are 360-degree high resolution ones. We are putting up warning signs of Rs 5 lakh fine for dumping garbage, waste and any effluent which pollutes the lake,” said BBMP Commissioner, Manjunath Prasad.
Kuntia also ordered all encroachments to be cleared. The Urban Development Department, BBMP, BWSSB, Karnataka State Pollution Control Board and Karnataka State Lake Development Authority officials have been directed to show results with regard to encroachments within two weeks and the NGT has sought an action report on this deadline.
The Bengaluru Development Authority, the custodian of the lake, has been directed to speed up works relating to removal of weeds and also the installation of a fence.
PN Nayak, BDA engineer-member, said, “We will clear the weeds and water hyacinth as soon as possible and coordinate with other agencies to maintain the water quality.”
According to Kuntia, 11 acres of lake land has been encroached upon and has already been cleared.
Vidyasagar, CEO of the Karnataka Lake Conservation and Development Authority, said that other polluters and encroachers are being identified.
“We have identified one already, and will slap the Rs 5 lakh fine on him,” he said. The lake development authority is sketching out a wetland model plan where a bed of plants such as colocasia, typha and pandana will be introduced into the lake.
“These have the ability to absorb nitrogen and phosphorus. The plants will be placed near the inlets where sewage enters the lake. People living in the vicinity of the lake will be appointed honorary wardens of the lake,” Rao added.
“They will monitor the restoration of the lake and report dumping and encroachment. Their job will be to inform officials about any illegal activities,” he said.