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Two projects to revive Puttenahalli Lake

Jagran City Plus
22-Jul-2012

By Shweta Singh

Working jointly to revive Puttenahalli Lake, Enzen Water Solutions, Puttenahalli Neighbourhood Lake Improvement Trust (PNLIT) and BBMP will shortly work on two projects-- Managing Water Quantity and Managing Water Quality.

Hope is contagious and the saying has borne the fruits aptly by lighting a ray of hope in the hearts of many citizens of Bangalore by the crusaders like Usha Rajagopalan, Arathi Manay, Prasanna K Vynatheya and O P Ramaswamy of Brigade Millennium and L&T South. The change has urged the government authorities - BBMP and Enzen Solutions to take concrete steps too, to instilling the life in the Puttenhalli Lake by increasing the water level and infusing oxygen into the lake, which once had lost the battle of life.
The firm believer of what once our father of nation, Mahatama Gandhi had said, 'Be the change you want to see in the world', one of the trustees of PLNIT, Usha Rajagopalan said that they wanted to save the lake. "There is little done and lot to do. However, I am glad that we have been successful in reviving the lake. There was a tremendous amount of support from the BBMP officials and engineers. And, I want to thank them for backing the trust up with their impeccable support."
Puttenahalli Lake has an area of 13 acres 25 guntas and the water body has a perimeter of 1.1 km. It is rain-fed with no other water source. Once the reservoir of sewage water and debris, the lake now, breathes life and has become the world for many birds, water snakes, fishes, crabs, etc.

A cumulative effort 
The solution for transforming Puttenahalli Lake is a joint effort of Enzen Water Solutions, Puttenahalli Neighbourhood Lake Improvement Trust (PNLIT), the caretakers of the lake and BBMP; the state authority assigned overall responsibility for the lake. After observing the lake area being prone to flooding, the authorities jointly agreed on diverting the rainwater of nearby areas to the lake.
By addressing dual challenges namely maintaining Puttenahalli Lake water quantity and quality the project has got BBMP's nod and would be implemented shortly. Talking to Cityplus, Prasanna K Vynatheya, another strong pillar of strength of PLNIT throws light on the water restoration plan which is in its nascent stage. "After much effort, we got RWH installed in the lake premises. Now, we are eyeing to get the rain water diverted into the lake to increase its level." Further telling us about then plan, Prasanna says that after discussing the matter with engineers of BBMP and Enzen Solutions, we successfully managed to get the nod. "Approximately Rs 10 lakh has been sanctioned for the diversion plan by BBMP. We are anxiously waiting for the work to begin," he added.
In May 2011, the BBMP formally handed over the maintenance of Puttenahalli Lake to PNLIT- a non profitable trust, the first instance of a lake being given to a citizens' group. Within two years of restoration, over 200 tree saplings have been planted and over 50 bird species spotted in and around the lake.
Sapna N K, environmental engineer BBMP said about the plan in detail. "We have called for the tender. And the tender will get the approval in one and a half months time sure shortly. After the approval we will call for the tenders and would quote the price."

Enzen’s role 
At present Puttenahalli faces two major problems. The first issue concerns the lack of storm water entering the lake leading to receding water levels and drying of the lake during summer.
The second and far more important issue is the contamination of lake water due to the ingress of untreated sewage from nearby residential and slum areas surrounding the lake. Speaking to Cityplus newspaper, Easwar, water department business leader of Enzen said, "To address the issue of improving lake water quality, Enzen carried out a first-of-its kind sampling initiative on 15,000 liters of water from the dirtiest culvert from lake. The sample water collected was found to be discolored, had objectionable odor and showed presence of algae."

Successful test result
Enzen trail run has proved successful in restoring lake water quality through a natural cycle and will soon be implemented for the entire lake. A glad Easwar do points out about the diversion of the rain water towards the lake so that soon the process can be started.
Being the faces of change the residents of JP Nagar Brigade Millennium and L&T South are nurturing the Puttenhalli Lake like their own child. Resident's initiative has yielded the best reward to them in a form of awareness amongst the citizens and governmental authorities.

Achievements of PNLIT
TCS award: 1st runner up for People's Green Award -2012 (May)
Finalist at Spark the Rise - 2012 (April)
Times Now - Amazing Indians - 2012 (Jan)
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