BENGALURU: Pre-monsoon showers provided much-needed respite to Bengalureans in what was a harsh summer. However, rain has only added to the problems of those living in the vicinity of the city’s lakes. The heavy showers that lashed the city in the past week have resulted in Varthur Lake foaming again. With toxic foam spilling over to the Whitefield Main Road, commuters had a tough time negotiating traffic on Saturday and Sunday.
Pravir B, a member of the citizen group Whitefield Rising, said that the wired mesh erected on the boundary of the lake that runs along Whitefield Main Road, had kept foam from entering the streets till the rain aggravated the condition. “We noticed froth on the road on Saturday morning. There’s a mesh on one side of the road, where foam has not escaped. But, the heavy winds resulted in foam getting blown from the other side of the lake and entering the road, disrupting traffic. In fact, the foam is entering helmets, and coming in contact with the skin,” he added.
The unbearable stench emanating from the lake has only added to the woes of commuters and residents. “The froth has also reached a hospital and a mall nearby,” said residents.
Pictures and videos of the frothing Varthur Lake have been posted on various social media platforms, with many citizens criticising civic bodies for their failure to address a recurring problem. Although the siphons and the mesh have restricted foam from entering the streets, froth continues to enter Varthur village. On Saturday morning, Bangalore Development Authority (BDA) commissioner Rakesh Singh carried out a routine inspection of Varthur Lake.
“All authorities are aware of the problem. They need to give it deeper thought. Varthur Kodi Junction is a busy place, and everyone gets affected by the foam. We must remember it was bound to happen given that root cause of the lake’s pollution has not been addressed,” Pravir said.
Subramanyapura Lake follows suit
While Bellandur and Varthur lakes have been in the news for foaming, and even catching fire, another of the city’s waterbodies joined the list of Bengaluru’s polluted lakes.
Residents living around Subramanyapura Lake near Uttarahalli in south Bengaluru were shocked to see the western side of the lake foaming on Saturday morning.
Residents alleged that some part of the lake had been encroached upon, besides turning into a dumpayrd. Chairman of the Karnataka State Pollution Control Board (KSPCB) Lakshman said that samples from the lake had been sent to the lab for testing. “We’ve already surveyed the areas surrounding the lake.
We have identified about 20 industries and apartment complexes near the lake, and I plan on meeting representatives from these establishments on Wednesday. I want to ensure that we follow the Bellandur example by ensuring that all STPs and industries are regularly inspected by our officers in Vrishabhavathy Valley. We will take this very seriously,” he added.