Tuesday, May 04, 2010

Palike seeks Central aid to revive lakes

Palike seeks Central aid to revive lakes
Bangalore, May 3, DHNS:

Faced with a funds crunch, the Bruhat Bangalore Mahanagara Palike is planning to write to the State government for revival of City’s water bodies under National Lake Conservation Programme.

The programme sponsored by the Central government provides 70 per cent of the total cost of the project and the state government will have to bear the balance. The Palike, in the previous budget, had reserved Rs 200 crore for conservation of 21 lakes under its control. The government, by an order dated April 19 handed over 73 more tanks to the BBMP. In addition, the Palike was also asked to adopt 94 more water bodies in the City.

Thus, the BBMP will have 162 lakes under its control, with no increase in the quantum of funds. According to a Palike official, it requires at least Rs 1,000 crore to conserve all the lakes in the City. The Palike, with near empty coffers is finding it difficult to fund the lake conservation projects. “Bellandur lake alone requires Rs 100 crore. How can we conserve the rest, spread over vast areas and calling for immediate attention,?” an official questioned.

Under the Lake Conservation Programme, the Union government grants funds for conservation of lakes on priority basis. The Palike authorities have approached the state government to utilise the Programme for developing the water bodies in the City.


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