Bangalore City – Is there a future?07 Jul 2013, Posted by City vs Country in
“The Government of Karnataka will have to evacuate half of Bangalore in the next ten years, due to water scarcity, contamination of water and diseases.” It is an ominous prophecy from V Balasubramanian, former Additional Chief Secretary of Karnataka and Chairman, Centre for Policies and Practices, who conducted an elaborate study of the water woes of India’s third largest metropolis.
Bangaloreans would do well not to dismiss Balasubramanian’s peep into the future as an exaggeration of a worried mind. It is corroborated by the lab results at the Public Health Institute, as well as the Department of Mines and Geology of the Karnataka government. The results reveal that 52% of the borewell water, and 59% of tap water in Bangalore, is not potable and contain 8.4% and 19% E.coli bacteria, respectively.
The reason: the groundwater in at least half of Bangalore is contaminated with sewage water. In 1790, a British captain had described Bangalore as the land of a thousand lakes. Today less than 200 of those 1000 lakes remain and are no more than sewage tanks. The sewage water contaminates the ground water and percolates into the borewells.
Bangalore’s water woes may only get worse with time.
For those wondering where the 800-odd lakes disappeared, one just has to drive around Bangalore to say, JP Nagar 4th
Phase, which was in fact the Sarakki Agrahara lake. Or to the Kanteerava Stadium, where the Sampangi lake once existed. Or Banakshankari 2nd stage (Kadirenahalli lake), Kempegowda Bus Terminal (Dharmabudhi lake), National Dairy Research Institute (Koramangala lake), HSR Layout (Parangipalya lake) and more. You are unlikely to find any epitaphs to what was clearly a better city to live in.