Wednesday, March 30, 2005

Ecological concerns now on BMP agenda

Ecological concerns now on BMP agenda

Deccan Herald

Desiltation work continued at the Yediyur lake a day after the skirmish between the Bangalore Mahanagara Palike (BMP) and environmentalists, over the alleged destruction of several nests.

“Desilting will continue, as saving the lake from disappearing is BMP’s first priority,” said Additional Commissioner of BMP P K Srihari. However, as a response to environmentalists’ argument, Mr Srihari said the BMP will draw maintenance reports to identify ecological concerns before venturing into civic projects in future.

“Desilting has to be done now, or the lake will die. The lake was dangerously shallow, and encroachers were already living in some parts of it. The desilted lake will resettle the ecological balance in the lake,” the official said adding that the work will be completed before the monsoons arrive in May.

The desilting work taken up at Yediyur lake last summer was discontinued because of a fallout between the contractor and BMP. The completion work has now been taken up by a new contractor, he said.

Meanwhile, environmentalists have been given two days to rescue egrets, coots, cranes and its hatchlings stranded in the lake. Twelve volunteers from the People for Animals and Compassion Unlimited Plus Action are working at the site.

More than 30 eggs and 15 nests were rescued on Tuesday, and 35 hatchlings and juvenile birds were put on incubators. The affected birds will be released in Bannerghatta National Park. Over 15 hatchlings are yet to be rescued, informed activist Sharad of PFA, adding that nearly 40 hatchlings have already been devoured by bigger birds or stolen by locals.`

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